OpenAI Founder in Talks to Raise $100 Million for Worldcoin and its Unique Identity System

OpenAI founder Sam Altman is in advanced talks to raise $100 million in funding for Worldcoin, a new cryptocurrency that uses iris-scanning technology to create a global identification system. The plan is to create a secure global currency that could potentially be used to provide a form of universal basic income that could offset job losses caused by artificial intelligence.

According to Finance Times, the group comprises existing and new investors, and previous investors in the company include crypto funds from Khosla Ventures and Andreessen Horowitz, as well as FTX founder Sam Bankman-Fried and internet entrepreneur Reid Hoffman.

OpenAI founder Sam Altman

While the cryptocurrency market has faced a bleak history over the past year, Worldcoin’s grand ambitions and innovative approach have caught the attention of investors. The company plans to tackle two problems posed by the growing sophistication of artificial intelligence: distinguishing between humans and bots, and providing a form of universal basic income.

Key to the company’s plans is an orb that uses iris biometrics to establish a person’s unique personality, then creates a digital World ID that can be camouflaged in a wide variety of daily applications without revealing the user’s identity. Once users establish their identity, they can receive free WorldCoin tokens, the company said.

Worldcoin has received criticism over privacy concerns related to biometric scanning. The company claims that it will not store iris scans and that the device will not harm users’ eyes.

After operating in beta, Worldcoin is preparing to roll out its blockchain protocol and start recording transactions in the next six weeks. Worldcoin declined to comment on the fundraising, but if successful, this investment will be a rare bright spot for a sector that has seen a difficult year.

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