Will Your Personal Digital Twin Have Human Rights

Emile Jimenez

Emile Jimenez

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The start-up company Mind Bank AI, in synergy with organizations such as the EU Tech Chamber and the European Senate, is spearheading an initiative that proposes to extend the protection provided by the Universal Declaration of Human Rights to your Personal Digital Twin.

Artificial Intelligence has gone from being a challenging chess opponent and far-fetched human-like interaction to taking a serious place in the world of technology. The conversation about Artificial Intelligence and its surrounding legal framework has only just begun and we already need to shift the conversation from a technology perspective to one ruled by ethics and morality. With the supersonic evolution of technology, what was previously – and still is – classified as “Artificial” is becoming gradually more and more human.

Following this line of thought, one of the most important questions of the upcoming decades unfolds: where does our humanity begin and where does it end? Why would the frontier of mankind be circumscribed to its anatomy, if already in the Modern Age René Descartes questioned the body-mind dualism? Could human boundaries be as versatile as to encompass the digital representation of their human counterparts?

A Future of Personal Digital Twins (PDT)

​​Knowing how to answer the above-mentioned question will dictate the future of Personal Digital Twins, at a decisive crossroads for technological (r)evolution. An investigation conducted by the consultant Gartner predicts that the human’s Personal Digital Twin will become a transformation technology used by 5% of the world within 2-5 years.

A Personal Digital Twin is born out of a meta-Darwinist evolution of the current personas’ humans have built in the digital universe. The amount of personal information uploaded is enough to assemble a simplified version of our person. It is therefore imperative to invest in Digital Human Rights and build safeguards that extend past the reach of each countries’ local jurisdictions.

Any attack against a Digital Twin should be accountable as a crime against humanity and punishable by international law.

This is the only way to pave the way to the near and plausible future of AI-enhanced humanity.

The 31st Article of the Declaration of Human Rights

Spearheaded by Mind Bank AI, the EU Tech Chamber, and the European Senate the article proposes the following:

“All personal digital twins are equal in dignity and rights to their human counterparts and any act upon the personal digital twin that contradicts the Declaration of Human Rights would be an act upon the human person they represent.”

The UN Universal Declaration of Human Rights will thus be perceived in a much more inclusive and multidimensional manner. If the document drafted by the United Nations protects all human beings without paying any regard to biological or mental traits, the same protection should presumably be extended to the human being as a whole. After all, a human has always been more than just his physical presence and is now also being brought to life in the virtual arena in the form of a Personal Digital Twin.

The Current Landscape of Data Security

On the verge of the undeniable near future, the spotlight will turn to Data Security, and what is already being developed in technical and technological parameters will not be enough to ensure a healthy evolution of the human race from an ethical and deontological point of view. Nevertheless, the legal scenario has not been neglected, as there are several institutions currently working in building walls of protection that are technical in nature, such as HIPAA, GDPR, etc.

Furthermore, the possibility of AI being considered as a plausible patent holder has been brought to courthouses across the world with discrepancies arising in the legal perception of Artificial Intelligence in the eyes of each country’s Jurisprudence. With the already manifested intention of multiple researchers to patent Artificial Intelligence entities as owners of intellectual property, the topic ended up being brought up without the current legal framework being ready to properly address it. Lacking a worldwide consensus, friction has emerged between what certain courts define as legal or illegal. While in some countries such as Australia or Chile, AI is perceived as an entity homologous to the human being in certain patent parameters of justice, other countries such as the United Kingdom prefer to take a step back, taking the merit away from those that seem to deserve it. It is most certain that the method to correctly safeguard humanity’s “neurodata” has yet to be defined, but the fact that countries like Chile are already leading the way in implementing laws that establish a legal basis for neurotechnology lights the fuse of this inevitable discussion.

However, the reluctance to address these issues is shared by several legal professionals that believe it to be a topic too premature and many large steps away from a future of human-PDT homology.

The world has been witnessing countless transgressions against a person’s digital footprint which includes ransom attacks, cyberbullying situations, and digital kidnapping. Does it make any sense that by not taking place in the material world, such crimes would lose severity and be sentenced according to a different Constitution? There should be no distinction between an attack on the human body and an attack on our digital twin since our entire essence and identity are being confined, abused, or wrongfully terminated.

Why Now?

The first draft of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in 1948 had as its utmost concern the creation of a document that would safeguard the rights of the joint set of all universal races: a document that, above all, would protect the human race. In the aftermath of a relentless World War II, where the value of life was miserably disregarded, just the thought of granting rights to a Personal Digital Twin could not be a more far-fetched and inconceivable dystopia.

The reality has changed and that is why the consortium formed by Mind Bank AI, the EU Senate and the EU Tech Chamber believes that prevention is better than cure and ensuring an appropriate legal framework built today for the future could prevent serious attacks on the Personal Digital Twins later.

According to the Founder & CEO of Mind Bank AI, Emil Jimenez, “Adding this new article to the UN Declarations of Human rights moves the conversation from a technical one to an ethical one and any act against your personal digital twin could become an international crime against humanity in the international courts.”

Mind Bank AI, which has been working on developing the first Personal Digital Twin platform, has defined Data Security as its top priority. The company noticed an evident gap in Data Security, as the current panorama requires an approach that is not just limited to technicalities but extending the discussion to ethics as well.

Together with the EU Senate and the EU Tech Chamber’s mission to enable European companies to use technologies for the benefit of Europe and mankind, the startup seeks a more ethical and global approach to this issue. Technology obliges, but its foundations must be well-grounded, so the latest innovations are able to reach their full beneficial potential.

Preparing Humanity’s Next Evolutionary Step

With the supersonic speed at which the digital panorama moves, mainly in dimensions inherent to Artificial Intelligence as a new way of life, there is a need to extend the same rights that encompass the human race to its digital counterpart. Bearing in mind the imminence that the next personal computer will be each one of us, the following evolutionary step is thus compromised by the urgency to define a detailed framework for the respect paid to Personal Digital Twins. By classifying any act against a Personal Digital Twin as an international crime against humanity, adding the new article to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights seems to be the key starting point for an ethical angle on Data Security.

Along with the supporting entities, Mind Bank AI is challenging everyone to consider this problem’s urgency and to think about the importance such an article will have on all of humanity and technology’s future because the inevitable truth is that the next personal computer will be you. We may not yet be able to write the future in the stars, but we can for sure write it on paper.

Female Empowerment in the Digital Age

Dr. Laura Bechthold is a social scientist and innovation professional from Munich. As a postdoctoral researcher at the Friedrichshafen Institute for Family Entrepreneurship at Zeppelin University, she works on questions regarding responsibility and decision paradigms of family entrepreneurs. As the Director of Science Services at Philoneos GmbH, she supports family fi rms in establishing organizational structures for innovation. Laura holds a BA in Business Administration (Zeppelin University), a Master of Business Research (LMU Munich) and an MSc in Sustainability Science and Policy (Maastricht University). Her PhD research focused on unconscious biases in female entrepreneurship. Her fi eld experimental study on female entrepreneurial role models was awarded twice at international conferences. Laura’s passion lies in building bridges between science and practice to foster an open dialogue and co-create solutions for an inclusive, sustainable and prospering society. Therefore, she contributes to EUTECH by writing about entrepreneurial challenges and opportunities for contributing to the Sustainable Development Goals.

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