Unveiling the Dark Underbelly: Unmasking Privacy Risks in AI Content Moderation

Artificial Intelligence (AI) refers to the ability of a Computer System to perform tasks typically requiring Human Intelligence. However, this word’s adoption came about from Films and Literature references. The world has seen AI grow from Science Fiction to Reality, with new AI models released every day that have the potential ability to take over jobs in the near future. However, like every movie on AI, is it possible that AI could pose risks that threaten an individual?

While this article does not discuss AI taking over the world, it delves into the subject of AI Content Moderation and how big companies integrating AI in their Content Moderation Policies pose a high risk to an individual’s Privacy and Personal Data.

AI Content Moderation

In today’s Digital world, with unimaginable amounts of data generated by users daily, it is virtually impossible to manually moderate content. This resulted in the need for more algorithmic and sophisticated content moderation, which brought about the evolution of AI in Content Moderation. In this sense, the term AI Content Moderation refers to using various automated processes at different phases of content moderation. It may range from simple keyword filters to several tools and techniques, such as machine learning and complex algorithms.

Integration of AI in Content Moderation is not a new subject for large social media companies and has been seen since the dawn of Covid-19. During this time, several perfectly acceptable contents were being flagged and spammed, resulting in many concerns over the use of AI in Content Moderation. However, with the vast developments since then and the need for automatic content moderation, AI is still in use. However, using AI in Content Moderation poses several risks to an individual’s privacy.

User Profiling and Model Training

For AI Content Moderation to work efficiently, a vast amount of user data is necessary to train its algorithms. This vast amount of data being collected raises concerns in relation to privacy and user profiling. Personal Data such as behavioral data, communication patterns, and biometric data can be collected and analyzed, resulting in a breach of privacy. The European Union’s Draft AI Act attempts to regulate data collection for the training of AI Systems by limiting the purposes for collecting data and setting rules for the Data Governance of such AI Systems.

Lack of User Control and Transparency

Another critical concern of AI in Content Moderation is the lack of transparency involved in its process. AI Decision making takes place based on previous data and other methodologies, which are kept behind the scenes resulting in an opaque content moderation process and users feeling powerless. Organizations must ensure transparency in their AI System processes to ensure an understanding of AI-based outcomes and allow users to challenge such outcomes.

Potential Data Bias

AI Content Moderation requires large amounts of Data for its decision-making processes, and any biased data collected can severely impact an individual’s Freedom of Expression. A skewed and biased data set may cause outcomes of the algorithm process that can lead to censorship or unfair removal of user-generated content.

Cross-Platform Data Sharing

It is very likely that data can be collected for training and improvement of an AI Content Moderation System from several other platforms. While this allows for a vast amount of data set to improve performance, the use of such data may have been done without the consent of the individual and introduces the risk of unwanted data exposures and privacy breaches. Organizations must ensure that proper consent is acquired before using data across platforms and that appropriate data protection mechanisms are implemented to avoid unauthorized data breaches.


AI has largely impacted several industries and sectors, with Content Moderation being no exception. While it can primarily do what manually seems impossible and holds immense potential for developing Content Moderation, it poses several risks to an individual’s Data Privacy.

Organizations need to take necessary steps and procedures to ensure Data Privacy through Privacy Policies, increased transparency, and enhanced user-centric controls to address significant issues of Data Privacy Concerns without compromising on innovation. Moreover, global Regulations and Policies can help ensure that organizations do not misuse data in the training and development of AI Content Moderation Systems. By addressing Privacy risks in AI Content Moderation, we can create a safer online environment, respect user rights, and help avoid potential Data Privacy risks.

Major Privacy Updates of the Week

Google accuses Microsoft of using unfair practices:

Alphabet Inc.’s Google and technology trade groups have filed a complaint with the FTC against Microsoft, alleging unfair business practices in the cloud industry.

The complaint raises concerns about anti-competitive tactics, including restrictive licensing terms and discouragement of cloud usage. Microsoft and Oracle have not yet responded to the allegations. Read more

Schumer proposes a comprehensive blueprint for AI regulation in the US:

Senator Chuck Schumer has unveiled a comprehensive plan for regulating artificial intelligence (AI), including a framework called SAFE Innovation and a series of AI insight forums.

The plan aims to ensure responsible and transparent use of AI and address key challenges. The forums will involve stakeholders and expedite the development of balanced policies. Read more

Industry Pros Urged to Advocate for Neuro inclusion:

Neurodiversity in Business (NiB) – the Neurodiversity Charity CEO Dan Harris called on cybersecurity professionals at Infosecurity Europe to embrace neurodiversity and support neurodiverse talent.

He emphasized the commercial benefits, encouraged discussions, and urged professionals to use their influence for positive change. Read more

EDPB approves cross-border complaint template, controller BCRs

The European Data Protection Board (EDPB) has introduced a template complaint form to facilitate cross-border complaint handling.

They also finalized updated recommendations on Controller Binding Corporate Rules (BCR-C) to ensure standardization and compliance with the CJEU’s Schrems II ruling. Read more

Russian hackers pose a threat to Canada's energy sector, CSE warns.

Canada’s spy agency has issued a warning that Russia-aligned hackers pose a threat to the country’s energy sector.

The agency highlights the potential risks and emphasizes the need for vigilance and cybersecurity measures to protect critical infrastructure. Read more

Curated by: Prajwala D Dinesh, Ritwik Tiwari, Ayush Sahay


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