The National Computer Cybercrimes Coordinating Committee (NC4) is the government operated cyber security and fintech monitoring organization in Kenya. The organization has issued an alarming report regarding the Worldcoin project.
It is important to mention that Worldcoin is a controversial project started by Sam Altman in association with Alex Blania and Max Novendstern. The project incentivizes people to earn WLD token by scanning their iris.
Worldcoin project has issued a device named Orb for scanning eye and the data is sent to Worldcoin application, where users can earn WLD tokens following scan confirmation.
However, the project was crowded with controversy within the first week of its launch. There has been criticism regarding user privacy and misuse of user data among other issues. A new alarm has been raised in a new report issued by NC4.
NC4 analysts have addressed the MPs in Kenyan parliament yesterday regarding potential dangers of Worldcoin project. A committee of 15 MPs have been put together to investigate the matter.
NC4 Raises Alarm Over Potential Dangers of Worldcoin Project
Colonel James Kimuyu has testified in front of the MP committee about various dangers of Worldcoin project. He has raised national security on account of the introduction of a global currency in the country.
He claimed that the impact of Worldcoin can have detrimental effect on the economic development of Kenya. The official also talked about the impact of an international virtual currency on financial autonomy of the region. He has retained that the data collection practices conducted by Worldcoin are still under scrutiny.
Thus far around 350K citizens of the African nation have reportedly signed up for Worldcoin since its introduction in July. However, the nation has now imposed a ban on the practice and ventured into investigating the project.
Other nations have undertaken similar action against Worldcoin such as Argentina, France, and Germany. Kenyan officials are going to conclude their investigation on the project within 33 days. A former WLD employee is now cooperating with the officials in Kenya to help them investigate the matter as per local media reports.
Worldcoin is working on creating a global identification system. The project raised $115 million in funds from venture firms such as Blockchain Capital, Bain Capital Crypto, Andreessen Horowitz, and Distributed Global in a funding round organized in May.
Project executive Ricardo Macieria has maintained that the project will aid governments and other organizations to carry out universal basic income implementation. He added that states and other firms will pay Worldcoin to access the user data collected by the firm.
He claimed that the firm will morph into an entity where anyone can create the Orb and use it for benefits of the community. However, the project has continued to receive heavy pushback on account of concerns around privacy, user consent, and ownership of the user data by one organization.
The official website of Worldcoin indicates that the biometric data of its users is either deleted or stored in encrypted form. Rainer Rahek, an AI researcher at Weizenbaum Institute of Berlin, who called Worldcoin data practices irresponsible.
Meanwhile, Worldcoin Foundation has responded by maintaining that it is compliant with personal data governance laws and working with government regulators to ensure privacy and protection for users.