Privacy Concerns Surrounding OpenAI’s ChatGPT

ChatGPT – a chatbot powered by artificial intelligence – has been making headlines since November 30, 2022. Recently, ChatGPT has come under scrutiny in the context of privacy regulations.

ChatGPT uses natural language processing, it could easily pick up confidential information such as names, addresses and phone numbers. If such information falls into the wrong hands, it could be used for malicious purposes, such as identity theft, scams, or extortion. Impersonation is another crime that can easily be carried out with the help of ChatGPT. In addition, the bot can learn a person’s manner of talking, language, and tone as well.

OpenAI has announced new features for its popular chatbot, ChatGPT, aimed at addressing growing concerns over user privacy. The San Francisco-based startup is introducing an “incognito mode” for the chatbot that will not store user conversation history or use it to improve artificial intelligence. Additionally, OpenAI is launching a “ChatGPT Business” subscription that offers increased data controls.

The move comes amidst heightened scrutiny over how chatbots like ChatGPT manage user’s data, which is often used to train AI. Last month, Italy banned ChatGPT over alleged data breaches and asked OpenAI to provide consumers with tools to consent data processing. France and Spain also began to study the service. Mira Murati, chief technical officer of OpenAI, told Reuters that the company complies with European privacy laws and is working to appease regulators. He added that the new features were developed not as a response to the ban in Italy, but as part of a monthly effort to prioritize user privacy. Users now have the option to turn off “Chat and Learning History” in their settings and export their data. However, OpenAI retains conversations for 30 days to detect potential abuse, after which they are permanently deleted.

ChatGPT is already available to businesses through Microsoft, which has made an investment in OpenAI. The “ChatGPT Business” subscription also does not use chats to train AI models by default. The new business subscription will appeal to the cloud provider’s existing customers. OpenAI’s goal is to create AI models that are “super aligned” with user’s preferences while prioritizing their privacy.

How to Protect Your Privacy When Using ChatGPT: 3 Key Tips

1. Register with a Private Email

You can use ChatGPT with your Google or Microsoft account, that may not be ideal for data protection. To protect your privacy, you should create an account with a secure email administration like Proton Mail or Tutanota.

2. Limit What You Share

You should be especially cautious what you share with ChatGPT, since there’s a strong possibility all of it is being recorded into the system. Expect that anything you put into ChatGPT is in the public space, and act similarly.

3. Delete Your Information

Under GDPR, you have the right to get your data removed from systems that access your data. If you are in Europe or the province of California, you should have the option to delete your personal data from OpenAI’s servers. You can delete your OpenAI account, but it’s not clear if the company would get rid of your data.


ChatGPT is powerful, versatile and has many practical uses.  ChatGPT needs to be used intelligently keeping the data privacy best practices in mind.

Author Details

Neenu Varghese

Neenu Varghese is a Technology Lead specialized in Java, Spring and Springboot. She strives to improve her customer centricity by listening to customer problem statements and creating solutions beneficial for her customer and her organization.

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