If you were at the Vaishali metro station on July 28, you would see an empty Worldcoin kiosk with three people in Worldcoin t-shirts with a desk and a spherical camera, sitting and waiting for passers-by to stop and ask them what they’re doing. When asked, they would tell you that all you have to do is get your face and iris scanned, and you would get 25 free crypto tokens, and each of these tokens is worth $2. On the other side of the city, in Hauz Khas, dozens of people were lining up to get these 25 tokens in exchange for their biometric data. What stuck out to us at MediaNama was that this project collects biometric data just like the Aadhaar database. It made us wonder if anyone can create a biometric database under the guise of giving people a universal basic income? Can you just give someone Rs.100 and get their biometric data in exchange for it? What is the legality of collecting biometric information in India? What is WorldCoin? Worldcoin is a cryptocurrency project launched on July 24. According to the project’s website, it consists of “a privacy-preserving digital identity (World ID) and, where laws allow, a digital currency (WLD) received simply for being human.” The website also says that the purpose behind creating this project is to “provide a reliable solution to distinguish humans from AI online” and “eventually show a potential path to AI-funded UBI [universal basic income]". This project is a collaboration…
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