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Security Concerns Raised Over Worldcoin Operations by CA and ODPC


The Communications Authority of Kenya (CA) and the Office of the Data Protection Commissioner (ODPC) have expressed reservations regarding the cryptocurrency project Worldcoin. In a joint statement, the two government agencies outlined security concerns related to the project, including data privacy issues and cyber security risks. They have also questioned the basis for the cash reward scheme offered to Kenyan registrants. This article will delve into the concerns raised by the CA and ODPC and the subsequent suspension of Worldcoin operations.

Security Concerns and Lack of Information Framework:

CA CEO, Ezra Chiloba, and Data Commissioner, Immaculate Kassait, called attention to the lack of clarity on the security and storage of sensitive data collected by Worldcoin, such as facial recognition and iris scans. They also raised concerns about the need to obtain proper consent from data subjects in exchange for monetary rewards, which might be seen as inducement. In addition, they highlighted inadequate information on cybersecurity safeguards and standards, as well as the risk of having massive citizen data in the hands of private actors without an appropriate regulatory framework.

Suspension of Worldcoin Operations:

As a response to these concerns, the Kenyan government temporarily suspended Worldcoin operations, following a multi-agency investigation into the project. The government aims to protect the public interest and prevent Kenyans from falling victim to fraudulent activities. The CA and ODPC have encouraged the relevant authorities to closely monitor Worldcoin and shed light on the nature of its services.

International Concerns and Cautions:

The controversy surrounding Worldcoin is not unique to Kenya. Similar concerns have been raised in countries such as Germany, France, the United Kingdom, and India. Kenyans are advised to exercise caution when providing personal data to private actors. The CA and ODPC emphasized that the public should remain alert and mindful when sharing their personal details with the global company.

The Worldcoin Registration Process:

Worldcoin, owned by Sam Altman, the owner of the US generative Artificial Intelligence (AI) company, offers a registration process that requires scanning an individual's eyeballs through an orb in exchange for a digital identity called World ID. As an incentive, registrants receive 25 free cryptocurrency tokens known as WLD, currently valued at Ksh.8,256, with one token trading at Ksh.344.90.


In light of the security concerns raised by the CA and ODPC, the Kenyan government has taken the necessary step to temporarily suspend Worldcoin operations. The investigation aims to address the regulatory gaps and protect Kenyans from potential harm. As the matter unfolds, it is crucial for individuals to remain cautious and mindful when sharing personal data with any private entity, especially in the context of emerging technologies and cryptocurrency projects like Worldcoin.


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