- Worldcoin launches a reservation feature using iris scan technology for World ID authentication.
- Despite its rapid expansion and promising tech, concerns arise over privacy, security, and its relationship with the troubled 3AC.
Worldcoin’s Iris Authentication: A Glimpse into the Future
Amidst the bustling crypto landscape, Worldcoin has made waves by unveiling an iris scan technology for its World ID authentication system. A project led by Sam Altman, CEO of OpenAI, the initiative allows users to pre-book WLD tokens. After reservation, participants have 12 months to visit an iris scan facility, enabling them to redeem their World tokens. The strategy is a clear bid to spur more active participation in the project.
Distinguishing Humans from Bots:
In the age of AI, distinguishing real users from bots on the internet is becoming challenging. Worldcoin is stepping up with the “Orb”, a device that scans the human iris. By doing so, they’re crafting a global database, generating a biometrics-based unique ID for each individual. As of July 2023, 2 million individuals had registered for World ID, spawning several services and apps supporting “Sign in with Worldcoin”.
However, not all is rosy. Concerns have bubbled up regarding Worldcoin’s stance on privacy and security, especially with its ties to the defunct major crypto firm, Three Arrows Capital (3AC). Blockchain transaction history pinpoints a massive movement of tokens from Worldcoin’s investor-focused financial address in the past five days. Notably, 75 million WLD (worth approximately 18.7 billion yen) was distributed to a 3AC address on August 6th.
The digital coin, after launching its mainnet on July 24, has been listed on major cryptocurrency exchanges like Binance and Bybit. Data from CoinMarketCap, however, indicates a declining price trend.
Regulatory concerns aren’t far behind. Governments from Kenya to European nations like France, Germany, and the UK have raised eyebrows over Worldcoin’s operations. Kenya has temporarily halted Worldcoin activities until a comprehensive risk assessment is completed. European regulators are investigating Worldcoin from a personal data protection perspective.
Moreover, MIT Technology Review critiqued Worldcoin’s marketing methods. It notes that a significant portion of the initial 500,000 authenticated users, gathered using the Orb, came from urban centers in developing countries. These users were lured with various incentives including cash and promises of future wealth. There are also allegations of Worldcoin making payments to former government officials.
Sam Altman, however, reiterates that Worldcoin has established mechanisms to robustly protect user privacy. He emphasizes adhering to all regulations in collaboration with regulatory authorities.
The momentum behind Worldcoin ID’s authentication is undeniably powerful. Major cities worldwide, including Seoul, Mexico City, New York, Berlin, Tokyo, and Paris, have set up stations for iris scanning using the Orb, witnessing a daily surge in participants.