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AI to Track Imports of Child Labour Products

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Photo: AI to Track Imports of Child Labour Products. Source: UNICEF
Photo: AI to Track Imports of Child Labour Products. Source: UNICEF

Every year, millions of people around the world are forced to work in poor conditions. According to the latest data from the International Labour Organization and UNICEF, this includes 160 million children aged 5 to 17.

Vijesti reported this.

To address the growing concern, United States (US) Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro Mayorkas announced the creation of a new working group to explore ways in which artificial intelligence can help identify and prevent goods produced by forced labour, including child labour, from entering the country.

"We will try to use artificial intelligence to better inspect shipments, identify imports of goods produced by forced labour and control the risk," said Mayorkas.

Nipping the problem in the source would be a big help, said Thea Lee, Deputy Undersecretary for International Affairs at the Department of Labour.

"I think artificial intelligence is an extremely powerful tool in trying to explore how we can use the data we have. For example, tracking cobalt that is mined in the Democratic Republic of Congo. How does it get into lithium-ion batteries in China and then get inserted into electric vehicle batteries that we can find in the United States of America?" asked Lee.

Artificial intelligence can also be used at national borders to identify counterfeit goods made with forced or child labour.

Pat Simmons, former director of the Customs Administration, notes that the largest port of entry in the United States for this type of goods is Long Beach in Los Angeles, with millions of containers of all types of goods arriving there every year.

"Artificial intelligence can play a significant role in this by simply connecting the dots of where the goods are coming from, where they are going. And by using advanced algorithms, they can put the puzzle together faster than humans can," Simmons says.

While artificial intelligence can be useful, experts warn that it is still not foolproof and should be used with caution.

Alain Greene, former deputy director of the Customs Administration, believes that artificial intelligence must first learn its environment:

"When you're trying to learn about an environment like China, and you know how difficult it is to get information from China, what's going to prevent false positives and who's going to verify the information that this artificial intelligence is providing is it actually accurate?"

In addition to technology, we need the will, says Thea Lee:

"We need governments and companies willing to take action to pass laws, enforce them and regulate them."

The Artificial Intelligence Task Force is due to report to the National Security Secretariat in the coming months.

Earlier, The Gaze wrote that a group of humanoid robots with artificial intelligence support said at the UN summit that they would eventually be able to rule the world better than humans.

Sociologists believe that people should be careful when using the rapidly developing potential of artificial intelligence. At the same time, robots have admitted that they cannot yet fully understand humans.






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