What is WorldCoin, the crypto project that asks for eye scans for sign-ups?

WorldCoin, a cryptocurrency project co-founded by Sam Altman, the CEO of OpenAI, has been making headlines for its unique approach to user verification. The project aims to create a new “identity and financial network” that uses biometric data to differentiate between humans and artificial intelligence systems, thereby preventing duplication of IDs.
To sign up for WorldCoin, users are required to undergo an iris scan using a device known as an ‘orb’. This orb, which resembles a large silver-colored Magic 8 Ball, scans the unique pattern in a person’s iris, much like a fingerprint. Once the scan verifies the individual as a real human, a World ID is created. This digital passport serves as proof of the user’s uniqueness and authenticity.
The WorldCoin project has garnered support from reputable figures such as Sam Altman, former president of Y Combinator and current CEO of OpenAI. Despite this, it has also faced criticism and scrutiny, particularly around issues of privacy, centralization, and security. Ethereum co-founder Vitalik Buterin has expressed concerns about potential abuses of the system.
WorldCoin’s use of biometric data has raised eyebrows among privacy campaigners and data regulators. The Bavarian State Office for Data Protection Supervision in Germany has been investigating the project due to concerns over its large-scale processing of sensitive biometric data. Similarly, Britain’s data regulator has stated it will make inquiries into the project.
Despite these concerns, WorldCoin maintains that it complies with all laws and regulations governing the processing of personal data. The WorldCoin Foundation asserts that it adheres to the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and that personal data is stored in encrypted form.
As of now, WorldCoin is valued at $0.0141 per WDC. Users interested in acquiring WorldCoin can do so by downloading the World App on their smartphone and undergoing an eye scan with an orb. They will then receive some WLD tokens for free in their wallet, which they can use or save as they wish.

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