December 14, 2023

Lawmakers hear support for expanding authority to control China’s access to AI tech through the cloud

Source: Inside AI Policy

Journalist: Mariam Baksh

Tim Fist, a fellow with the technology and national security program at the Center for New American Security, told Inside AI Policy know-your-customer style requirements laid out in the Oct. 30 executive order on artificial intelligence for “dual-use foundational models” would be an important precursor for applying export controls aimed at limiting China’s development of AI for military applications to the cloud.

“Creating those kinds of know your customer requirements above some threshold of computation usage is almost certainly a good idea, just for getting visibility about how big a deal would we expect this to be? Are Chinese developers actually seeking to use us cloud services? And how can we sort of get better at detecting when a Chinese user accessing those Cloud Services has links to military intelligence?” he said, adding, “I would support giving vast powers to control the cloud but I would only want that to happen in particular cases.”

Fist said there are some factions pushing for a wholesale ban of all AI-related supply chain elements being exported to China -- whether chips or cloud -- and others, like CNAS, advocating a more “surgical” approach that would include thresholds similar to those identified in the executive order.

But, “in either world,” he said, “controls are getting expanded and companies won’t like it.”

Read the full story and more from Inside AI Policy.


  • Tim Fist

    Senior Adjunct Fellow, Technology and National Security Program

    Tim Fist is a Senior Adjunct Fellow with the Technology and National Security Program at CNAS. His work focuses on the governance of artificial intelligence using compute/comp...