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UK Information commission launches investigation into Worldcoin’s data practices

TL;DR

  • The UK Information Commission is investigating Worldcoin’s data-handling practices amid data privacy and security concerns.
  • Worldcoin’s rise in popularity has led to questions about its extensive collection of personal data during its universal basic income system implementation.
  • The investigation could set a precedent for data privacy concerns in the crypto industry and might also impact other major cryptos.
  • This investigation highlights the need for self-regulation within the crypto industry to address data privacy issues and build trust with regulators and users.

Worldcoin has emerged as a significant participant in the crypto industry, promising to broaden people’s access to virtual assets and make it easier to participate in the global financial system. 

The UK Information Commission, however, is very interested in Worldcoin due to the rising concern over data privacy and security. The commission’s investigation aims to verify that the platform in question complies with all applicable data protection laws and standards.

UK ICO Inquires Worldcoin

On Monday, a new crypto Worldcoin was introduced, and its creators call it a “digital passport” that can be used to verify a person’s humanity. Since the project’s early access phase has amassed over 2 million users.

Worldcoin is a new crypto that aims to use its novel proof-of-stake consensus algorithm to implement a universal basic income. Its stated goal was to disseminate currencies to users everywhere, effectively doing away with geographical and other restrictions. As the platform’s user base grew, so did concerns about handling user information.

However, reports suggest that UK data regulators might look into the recently launched crypto and ID project Worldcoin due to privacy and critical biometric data safety concerns.

UK government stated on its website the ICO’s mandate is to safeguard people’s privacy regarding their personal data. The investigation would assess Worldcoin’s dedication to protecting the privacy of UK residents who could register at several London-based websites.

Interested users will have to download the World app, which will allow them to, among other things, qualify for a potential universal basic income program to register for a WorldID. The software creates keys connected with a hash of their eye image to prove that a user is a distinct human.

OpenAI’s CEO, Sam Altman, co-founded the digital identification–focused crypto project on July 24. Andreessen Horowitz, Bain Capital Crypto, and Distributed Global contributed $115 million to the initiative in May. Even though many people were skeptical of Worldcoin during its beta phase, the industry managed to recruit over 2 million users.

While the figures might seem high at first glance, research published in the MIT Technology Review research suggests that most users were recruited in underdeveloped nations using dishonest means (such as “deception, cash handouts, and exploiting workers”). Concerns concerning the security of users’ biometric data and privacy concerns are only two of the many issues greeted with resistance from the crypto community regarding this project.

This is Sam Altman’s third venture that has gotten him in trouble with the law.

Altman is the CEO of OpenAI, the firm developing ChatGPT, and the chairman of a start-up in the nuclear industry; he has also backed companies working to improve human life, like Elon Musk’s brain implant startup.

However, U.S. and European authorities are investigating whether ChatGPT and other AI tools threaten users’ security and privacy.

Last week, Altman and other executives from tech companies voluntarily agreed to precautions designed to reduce the risks posed by artificial intelligence. The Biden-Harris administration has also unveiled a National AI R&D Strategic Plan to encourage ethical development.

The US Federal Trade Commission has been looking into whether or not ChatGPT has harmed US consumers by spreading false information since earlier this year. The company’s data privacy practices are under investigation.

Worldcoin faces regulatory hurdles in the US

Worldcoin’s native token, WLD, will not launch in the US, and U.S.-based exchanges like Coinbase and Kraken will not sell it. This contrasts the situation in the UK, where it has been subject to an inquiry. 

The project developers said they called because of worries about U.S. regulations. Many crypto enthusiasts, however, argue that it is security even though it has yet to be officially registered.

Disclaimer. The information provided is not trading advice. Cryptopolitan.com holds no liability for any investments made based on the information provided on this page. We strongly recommend independent research and/or consultation with a qualified professional before making any investment decision.

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Florence Muchai

Florence is a crypto enthusiast and writer who loves to travel. As a digital nomad, she explores the transformative power of blockchain technology. Her writing reflects the limitless possibilities for humanity to connect and grow.

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