Binance says someone used ChatGPT to accuse CZ of ties to CCP
Congressional offices were led to believe that Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao was part of a Chinese state youth group, one company executive said.
Unknown parties fabricated rumors that Binance’s CEO is tied to the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) with the help of ChatGPT, based on reports from May 1.
ChatGPT sourced info from fake pages
According to Fortune, an unknown source spread misinformation to various parties, including congressional offices. Subsequently, those parties wrote to Binance and asked whether its CEO, Changpeng Zhao, maintained ties to the CCP.
Their requests cited a conversation from ChatGPT as evidence of Zhao’s CCP connections. Binance was eventually able to reproduce the conversation in question, and Binance’s CSO, Patrick Hillman, shared the logs of the conversation on Twitter.
Hillman’s ChatGPT log specifically claims that Zhao was a member of the Youth League Committee of the China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC) in the 1990s. That log also suggests that Zhao worked as a software developer for the CNPC.
ChatGPT cited two URLs as evidence of its claims. One URL points to a LinkedIn page that does not exist and does not match Zhao’s official profile. The other URL points to a Forbes URL titled “Crypto King, Meet the Quiet Crypto Crusader With [a] $700 Million War Chest,” which is attributed to former Forbes author Pamela Ambler but does not exist.
“We can’t find any evidence of [the Forbes] story nor the LinkedIn page ever existing,” Hillman wrote in his account of events on Twitter.
Zhao’s actual LinkedIn profile does not indicate that he worked for the CNPC. It also does not include his employment history prior to 2001.
Binance’s Chinese ties were previously questioned
Binance has previously been targeted by similar accusations. In September 2022, Zhao denied accusations that Binance executive Guangying Chen is an agent of the Chinese government. He also said that Binance is not incorporated in China.
Later, on March 29, 2023, the Financial Times published an article suggesting that Binance hid its Chinese presence after it obtained internal Binance documents. Zhao similarly denied those claims, albeit without providing any specific counterpoints.
Today’s incident, however, is novel due to the fact that AI was the main source of rumors. Hillman acknowledged that “bad actors” will misuse AI, as with any new technology.
He also noted that Binance is itself using AI for its own constructive purposes — in line with statements made by Zhao himself earlier this year.