Worldcoin Bolsters Ties With Malaysian Government and Leaders

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According to a post on X, Alex Blania, the CEO and Sam Altman, the Co-founder of Tools For Humanity and lead developer of the Worldcoin project (WLD), engaged in a virtual meeting with representatives from Malaysia’s digital ministry.

The Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation shared photos of the meeting on X. The virtual meeting held last Friday, and Nordstar and its impressive lineup of portfolio companies, including Worldcoin, were all in attendance.

On Tuesday, Blania reposted Malaysia’s Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim’s post and expressed gratitude to the Malaysian official. The aim for this meeting between the digital currency project’s main advocates and the Malaysian officials was to strengthen government ties while emphasizing their dedication to safeguarding user data and privacy concerns.

The project is actively collaborating with regulators and government officials to demonstrate its commitment. Worldcoin’s core idea is to assign digital identities to individuals, making it easier to differentiate between humans and AI-powered entities in the future.

The Tumultuous Record of Worldcoin

The digital currency project, which offers cryptocurrency (WLD tokens) in exchange for iris scans to create personal World IDs, suffered a temporary ban from Spain and Portugal last month and this required them to stop collecting personal data. Privacy concerns have been raised regarding the collection and management of biometric data by Worldcoin in different jurisdictions.

It seems Worldcoin has a knack for challenges as it has also experienced regulatory scrutiny after introducing WLD tokens to new signups which are mostly from the Global South.

Regulatory examination has also come from countries like Germany, France, UK, Argentina and Kenya. Just last month, the eyeball scanner project firm faced a regulatory probe from the South Korea’s Personal Information Protection Commission (PIPC) after receiving numerous complaints regarding the project’s handling of personal data.

Worldcoin making moves amid challenges 

Altman’s close association with the project has been the main reason why Worldcoin’s challenges have gained significant media attention.

He gained prominence as the CEO of OpenAI, the company behind the well-known AI platform ChatGPT. Behind the scenes at Worldcoin, some individuals were surprised by the early government focus on the project and felt unprepared to handle the increased interest and scrutiny. This information comes from a source familiar with the situation.

Interestingly, top government officials are still expressing interest in engaging with Worldcoin amidst the growing curiosity and concerns surrounding artificial intelligence, including issues like deepfakes.

Earlier this year, Tools for Humanity made a move to enhance its relationship with the government by appointing Trevor Traina, a former U.S. ambassador to Austria, as its head of global affairs.

Traina mentioned in an announcement made on the company’s blog that policymakers have numerous questions and as contributors to Worldcoin, it is their responsibility to meet those expectations and to ensure the project fulfills its mission safely.

New way of doing things 

Worldcoin has come up with new initiatives on how to go about its business. With the help of third parties expertise in privacy and security, the company was able to develop new operational measures. Feedbacks and questions raised by data protection authorities in certain places where Worldcoin is available were also taken into account.

This collaboration birthed the introduction of a new feature in March called “Personal Custody” which basically means that when people sign up for World IDs now, they can’t request to have their biometric data stored and encrypted anymore. Tiago Sada, the Head of Product at Tools for Humanity said this   move would make people’s minds be at ease.

A few weeks later, the project made another announcement that if users signed up for a World ID, they  can now request Worldcoin to permanently delete the “iris code” that was created when their eyeballs were scanned. On top of that, they’re taking age verification seriously to make sure no one under 18 signs up.

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