- Britain’s data regulator is set to investigate Worldcoin, a project helmed by OpenAI CEO Sam Altman, which uses iris scans to provide digital identification and free cryptocurrency.
- Launched on Monday with two million users from its trial, Worldcoin has already initiated iris-scanning operations in 20 countries, including sites in London.
Worldcoin, the groundbreaking project led by OpenAI CEO Sam Altman, finds itself under the watchful gaze of the UK’s data regulator. In this innovative venture, users exchange their iris scans for a unique digital identity, earning free cryptocurrency in the process. However, with such novelty comes controversy.
The Watchdog Takes Interest
The Information Commissioner’s Office, Britain’s data regulator, has decided to take a closer look. In a statement to Reuters, a spokesperson mentioned,
“We note the launch of Worldcoin in the UK and will be making further enquiries.”
The launch of Worldcoin has been significant. On its very first day, it managed to onboard two million users from its trial, and began expanding its iris-scanning operations across 20 countries, including key locations in London.
Self-dubbed as a “new identity and financial network”, the Worldcoin project seeks to pave a new path in the crypto arena. Upon signup, users are assigned a unique digital ID, a cutting-edge feature aimed to distinguish genuine human users from artificial intelligence online.
This unique feature of human identification plays a dual role. Not only does it bestow upon users a digital ID, but it also rewards them with the project’s proprietary cryptocurrency – the Worldcoin token. Available to signups in certain countries, this cryptocurrency acts as an incentive to draw users into this new network.
Despite the regulatory interest, Worldcoin token performed reasonably well upon its launch. Initially surging to a peak of $3.30, the token’s value later steadied, and was recorded at $2.01 on Tuesday, according to the market tracker CoinGecko.
While the project continues to make waves, it’s clear that the road ahead may not be entirely smooth. With the UK data regulator now showing keen interest, the iris-scanning cryptocurrency project must demonstrate its commitment to user privacy and data security. For a project that could change how we see identity in the digital world, the stakes have never been higher.