OpenAI has announced the launch of a Preparedness Challenge, an effort to identify potential risks associated with highly advanced “frontier” AI systems. The challenge comes as part of OpenAI’s broader catastrophic risk preparedness initiatives aimed at ensuring the safety of transformative AI technologies.
The Preparedness Challenge invites participants to consider how OpenAI’s state-of-the-art natural language, speech, and image generation models could hypothetically be misused by malicious actors. Entrants are prompted to outline unique catastrophic misuse scenarios involving OpenAI’s Whisper, Voice, GPT-4V, and DALL·E 3 models across threat categories like cybersecurity exploits, biological weapons, or persuasion techniques.
OpenAI will offer $25,000 in API credits to up to 10 top submissions that detail imaginative yet probable misuse cases. The AI research lab indicated it will publish noteworthy entries and recruit top performers for its newly formed Preparedness team tasked with monitoring and evaluating frontier AI risks.
“As AI models continue to improve, we need to ensure we have the understanding and infrastructure needed for the safety of highly capable AI systems,” said OpenAI in its announcement. “We believe frontier AI models have the potential to benefit humanity but also pose increasingly severe risks.”
The challenge reflects OpenAI’s concerns over potential dangers associated with artificial general intelligence and other transformative AI capabilities. While the benefits may be profound, uncontrolled misuse of AGI could pose existential threats, necessitating rigorous preparedness.
“Managing the catastrophic risks from frontier AI will require answering difficult questions about the real-world impacts of these systems when put to misuse,” OpenAI emphasized. The company believes exercises like the Preparedness Challenge will strengthen capabilities for “monitoring, evaluation, prediction, and protection” against frontier AI risks.
The challenge builds on OpenAI’s ongoing risk mitigation efforts and its voluntary commitment earlier this year alongside other major AI labs to promote AI safety, security and trust. As more advanced models than GPT-4 come to fore, OpenAI appears committed to probing potential downsides and engaging the community to develop solutions.