Samsung employees used ChatGPT to troubleshoot and optimize proprietary code, as well as to prepare meeting notes.
Samsung has been increasingly concerned about their developers using ChatGPT for various purposes including reviewing code and fixing bugs. The company had banned the use of ChatGPT, which was lifted recently on March 11. As soon as this was done, the semiconductor business premises in the Korean headquarters of Samsung Electronics pasted proprietary code related to facility measurement and yield/defect into ChatGPT – essentially giving OpenAI access to it, and to all others who use the platform as everything is used by ChatGPT to learn and improve.
To better fight this, Samsung now wants to create its own AI service under its Innovation Center.
A total of 3 incidents were reported by Economist Korea [Korean]. Two cases were regarding the leakage of equipment information and the third one was regarding the leakage of meeting contents. As an immediate measure, Samsung limited employees’ input to ChatGPT to 1024 bytes per question. Currently, no investigation has led to any disciplinary action.
ChatGPT employees regularly check inputs and can choose to notify companies when such leaks or breaches occur. Corporate secrets and closed-source code fed into ChatGPT become part of its learning dataset and can be viewed by other organizations if they know where to look.
The ban was lifted in a bid to keep executives and employees updated on the latest in tech.
- One employee entered problematic source code of the semiconductor facility measurement database download program, inquiring about a solution.
- The second employee entered code regarding yield and defective equipment, requesting it to optimize the code.
- The third employee entered the whole contents of a meeting recorded on their phone, asking ChatGPT to prepare minutes or a summary.
Samsung warned that “If a similar accident occurs even after emergency information protection measures are taken, access to ChatGPT may be blocked on the company network.”
Emily Dreibelbis from PCMag writes how ChatGPT can replace hours that engineers spend attempting to fix and troubleshoot their code, including on sites like Stack Overflow (the platform has itself banned ChatGPT code temporarily).