Google’s Chatbot Bard Now Available in Europe with Privacy Hub
Google released its chatbot Bard to the European public yesterday, after previously being blocked by the Irish Data Protection Commission (DPC). The tech giant has made a number of changes to the chatbot, including more transparency and changes to user controls.
“We will continue our partnership with Google regarding Bard after launch and Google has agreed to conduct an assessment and provide a report to the DPC once Bard has been up and running in the EU for three months,” said Graham Doyle, Responsible Media and communication at the DPC.
The Bard Privacy Hub is a key feature of the chatbot, giving users the option to keep their conversations with Bard out of the training set of machine learning technologies. A spokesperson at Google said that users can choose how long Bard keeps their data on their Google account. By default, Google stores Bard activity in the user’s Google account for up to 18 months, but users can change this to three or 36 months if they wish. They can also disable this completely and simply delete their Bard activity at g.co/bard/myactivity.
Google collects conversations with Bard from all users by default, in order to improve existing products and develop new ones. The company indicates that it will keep all data for a maximum of three years.
However, the Privacy Hub gives users a way to keep their conversations with Bard out of Google’s hands. New conversations with the chatbot will then no longer end up in the systems to train machine learning models. Only in case the user provides feedback on an answer from Bard or marks the answer as malicious, does the tech giant still have access to the conversation.
Users who notice that the chatbot is providing incorrect information about them can also try to change that. In this case, it is possible to request that content be removed from the chatbot via a request.
Google’s chatbot Bard is now available in Europe, with the Privacy Hub giving users the option to keep their conversations with Bard out of the training set of machine learning technologies. The chatbot also provides users with the ability to change how long Bard keeps their data on their Google account, as well as the option to disable this completely and delete their Bard activity. Furthermore, users can request that content be removed from the chatbot if it is providing incorrect information about them.