Crypto news: Concerns and interests between Argentina and Italy over Worldcoin and iris scanning

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The proposal of Worldcoin, which involves scanning the iris in exchange for the crypto, is causing discord in Argentina and has also caught the attention of the Italian Data Protection Authority.

Even though cryptocurrency has sparked interest during the economic crisis in the country, the Italian Data Protection Authority has warned about the possible violation of the EU Regulation on the protection of personal data.

Let’s see below all the details. 

Worldcoin crypto: potential violation of EU data protection regulations

As anticipated, in Argentina, during the economic crisis characterized by high inflation, many citizens are heading to Buenos Aires to obtain the crypto Worldcoin (WLD), also attracted by the weakness of the national currency.

To access the e-money launched by Sam Altman, it is necessary to undergo iris scanning through a device. In recent months, hundreds of thousands of people have been involved, mainly due to the country’s economic difficulties.

However, international regulatory authorities are already closely analyzing the Worldcoin cryptocurrency due to concerns about data privacy.

If the Worldcoin project, which is based on iris scanning to verify the identity of users, were implemented in Italy, it would likely violate the EU Regulation on the protection of personal data, with consequent sanctions provided by law. 

This is the warning sent by the Privacy Guarantor to the Worldcoin Foundation, promoter of the project launched by the CEO of OpenAI, Sam Altman, for cryptocurrency trading.

The Orb project and the disputed creation of a global identity

The Worldcoin protocol aims to establish a global identity (World ID) and a financial network based on the Wold cryptocurrency. 

At the center of the project is the Orb, a biometric device that scans the face and iris, creating a unique worldwide identification code for each individual, known as World ID.

However, according to the Worldcoin Foundation, it is able to distinguish humans from objects produced by artificial intelligence.

Even though Orbs are not yet operational in Italy, Italian citizens can already download the World App from the stores, provide their personal data and book free Wld tokens. Orb, World ID and World App, interconnected with each other, make up the Worldcoin ecosystem.

According to the Italian Authority, based on the information provided by the company and available on its website, the processing of biometric data cannot be considered a valid legal basis according to the requirements of the European Regulation.

This is because such treatment would be obtained through the consent of the project participants and based on insufficient information. 

Furthermore, the offer of free Wld tokens by Worldcoin negatively affects the possibility of freely and unconditionally consenting to the processing of biometric data through Orb. 

Even though the Guarantor does not explicitly state it, it seems that the whole mechanism is an attempt to establish a world iris bank in exchange for a token currently ranked 84th among cryptocurrencies, with a market capitalization of 1.1 billion dollars. 

It is surprising that the Worldcoin project did not succeed, considering that it goes against the libertarian philosophies of Bitcoiners. 

It is equally surprising that Sam Altman, one of the top developers of artificial intelligence, has this perception of his peers. However, Altman has been warned: the decision of the Guarantor is in the process of being published in the Official Gazette.

Advanced privacy features: increased user control

Worldcoin has recently announced the implementation of new privacy protection measures in response to increasing pressure from authorities around the world. 

The main goal of these new features, as stated in a blog post, is to offer users greater control over their data while maintaining network security.

One of the main new features is the personal vault, which includes the new “Unverify World ID” function.

This feature leverages modern techniques such as zero-knowledge proofs (ZKP), allowing users to confirm transactions without revealing sensitive details such as the amount or the parties involved.

These additions ensure the protection of users’ financial information from possible interceptions, making transactions more private and secure. 

Furthermore, in the near future, World ID holders will have the opportunity to permanently delete their iris code. Once the deletion is requested, the World ID becomes invalid, initiating a six-month “cooling-off” period to prevent fraud.

Once the reflection period has expired, a user’s iris code cannot be recovered. In addition, Worldcoin has implemented age verification checks to ensure that only individuals over the age of 18 can access the network.

These new privacy features represent an important step forward for Worldcoin, further demonstrating its commitment to user-centered innovation. 

In addition to improving privacy, these features attract a greater number of users to the Worldcoin platform, including companies and individuals looking for secure and discreet biometric solutions.

However, despite these efforts to improve privacy, regulators around the world, especially in Spain, have expressed concerns about Worldcoin’s data collection and management policies. 

As a result, the company’s operations were temporarily suspended in early March by the Spanish Data Protection Agency.