Fourth principle: Bias and Harm Mitigation
Those responsible for AI enabled systems must proactively mitigate the risk of unexpected or unintended biases or harms resulting from these systems, whether through their original rollout, or as they learn, change or are redeployed. AI enabled systems offer significant benefits for Defence. However, the use of AI enabled systems may also cause harms (beyond those already accepted under existing ethical and legal frameworks) to those using them or affected by their deployment. These may range from harms caused by a lack of suitable privacy for personal data, to unintended military harms due to system unpredictability. Such harms may change over time as systems learn and evolve, or as they are deployed beyond their original setting. Of particular concern is the risk of discriminatory outcomes resulting from algorithmic bias or skewed data sets. Defence must ensure that its AI enabled systems do not result in unfair bias or discrimination, in line with the MOD’s ongoing strategies for diversity and inclusion. A principle of bias and harm mitigation requires the assessment and, wherever possible, the mitigation of these biases or harms. This includes addressing bias in algorithmic decision making, carefully curating and managing datasets, setting safeguards and performance thresholds throughout the system lifecycle, managing environmental effects, and applying strict development criteria for new systems, or existing systems being applied to a new context.
Published by The Ministry of Defence (MOD), United Kingdom in Ethical Principles for AI in Defence, Jun 15, 2022