Worldcoin, the controversial startup led by Sam Altman, has announced plans to discontinue its Orb-verification service in India, Brazil, and France.
The decision follows just months after the company’s expansion of its helmet-shaped eyeball-scanning verification device, known as the Orb, into these markets.
The Tools for Humanity foundation, overseeing Worldcoin’s development, clarified that the Orb’s introduction in these regions was part of a “limited time access” initiative. Despite the withdrawal, the foundation reiterated its global commitment to collaborating with partners to ensure compliance with regulatory standards and to maintain a secure, transparent, and safe service for verified individuals, MoneyControl reported.
Worldcoin’s eyeball verification process received a lot of scrutiny from governments as well as within the web3 industry who advocate for digital privacy rights.
Worldcoin’s Eyeball Verification Service Expanded Globally
The Orb, a distinctive five-pound chromatic sphere, scans individuals’ eyeballs to verify their identities. According to Lily Gordon, a spokesperson for Tools for Humanity, the Orb’s multi-city tour commenced in Tokyo in April 2023 and spanned North America, Europe, the Middle East, and Asia. The tour concluded in late summer, accompanied by Orb previews in various cities and the launch of the protocol.
Worldcoin, backed by approximately $250 million in funding from prominent investors such as Andreessen Horowitz, Khosla Ventures, and Reid Hoffman, initiated its global services rollout in July. The startup’s mission is to develop a reliable solution for distinguishing humans from AI online, facilitating global democratic processes, and enhancing economic opportunities.
While the reasons for discontinuing the Orb-verification service in India, Brazil, and France remain undisclosed, the company emphasized its dedication to maintaining a secure service while complying with regulatory requirements. The crypto industry’s evolving landscape presents challenges for Worldcoin, requiring the company to navigate a complex regulatory environment as it seeks to achieve its ambitious goals.
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