Worldcoin Responds to Kenyan Government’s Suspension with Privacy and Inclusivity Commitment

In a recent development, the Kenyan Ministry of Interior suspended Worldcoin’s operations in the country, citing data privacy concerns related to its citizen identification methods. The digital currency project had been offering proof of personhood verification services through iris scans, resulting in an overwhelming response from Kenyan citizens, with tens of thousands waiting in lines for World IDs over a three-day period. In response to the suspension, the Worldcoin Foundation has come forward with a comprehensive statement outlining its commitment to privacy, inclusivity, and cooperation with local regulators.

Acknowledging the concerns raised by the Kenyan government, the Worldcoin Foundation expressed an abundance of caution and a proactive approach in dealing with the high demand for its verification services. To mitigate crowd volume and address privacy concerns, the Foundation has temporarily paused the verification services. During this pause, the Worldcoin team plans to develop an onboarding program that includes robust crowd control measures, ensuring a smoother and more efficient process for Kenyan citizens seeking World IDs.

Kenya suspends Worldcoin data collection programme amid safety concerns

Furthermore, the Worldcoin Foundation aims to work closely with local officials to enhance their understanding of the privacy measures and commitments that the project implements not only in Kenya but also globally. The foundation has emphasized that it does not and will never sell any user personal data, and its operations comply with all laws and regulations governing the processing of personal data in the markets where Worldcoin is available.

As part of its commitment to protecting individual privacy, any images captured during the World ID verification process are promptly deleted from the Orb. Additionally, the Worldcoin Foundation is registered as a data processor with the office of the data protection commissioner, further underscoring its dedication to safeguarding user data.

The Foundation has a history of engaging directly with the Office of the Data Protection Commissioner for over a year, maintaining a steady and open exchange of information. This cooperative approach ensures that the privacy and data protection practices of the project remain transparent and accountable to governing bodies.

Worldcoin also acknowledges the Kenyan Capital Markets Authority’s statement that its products are not investment products and appreciates the authority’s willingness to work with innovative fintech products like Worldcoin.

Moreover, Worldcoin has actively sought to collaborate with local organizations and entities, having established an ongoing partnership with Nairobi City County and being an active member of the Blockchain Association of Kenya, AmCham Kenya, and SafariDAO. This demonstrates the project’s commitment to building constructive relationships within the local ecosystem.

One of the core objectives of the Worldcoin project is to establish proof of personhood, especially in the face of increasing challenges in differentiating between bots and humans. With an estimated 4.4 billion people worldwide lacking a legal, digitally-verifiable identity, Worldcoin’s World ID aims to address this gap by providing a privacy-preserving, self-sovereign digital identity.

As the project looks forward to resuming its services in Kenya, the Worldcoin Foundation reiterates its dedication to providing an inclusive and privacy-preserving decentralized on-ramp to the global digital economy. The foundation assures its commitment to cooperating with local regulators and stakeholders to address their concerns and ensure a smoother and privacy-respecting experience for Kenyan citizens.

In conclusion, Worldcoin’s response to the Kenyan government’s suspension reflects its commitment to user privacy, data protection, and inclusivity. As the project adapts its verification services to address concerns, it sets a precedent for responsible and proactive engagement with governing bodies to create a secure and privacy-oriented digital ecosystem for all users.

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