Worldcoin gets banned in Spain

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Spain has imposed a temporary ban on Worldcoin, a digital ID cryptocurrency venture founded by OpenAI CEO Sam Altman, due to concerns regarding the collection and processing of biometric data. The Spanish Data Protection Agency (AEPD) has issued a precautionary measure that halts Worldcoin's activities in the country for up to three months. This decision comes after the AEPD received several complaints about Worldcoin's practices, including the alleged insufficient information provided to users, the collection of data from minors, and issues related to the inability to withdraw consent1234. Worldcoin's system involves scanning users' eyeballs with a device called "orbs" to create a unique form of identification called "World ID," after which users receive Worldcoin cryptocurrency. The AEPD has requested that Tools for Humanity, the company responsible for collecting and processing users' personal data, cease gathering new data and stop using the data already collected in Spain2. The AEPD has highlighted the need for "special protection" when processing biometric data due to the "high risks to the rights of individuals," which includes concerns about potential data transfers to third parties2. Despite the ban, Worldcoin's data protection officer, Jannick Preiwisch, has criticized the AEPD's actions, claiming that the agency is "circumventing EU law" and spreading "inaccurate and misleading claims" about Worldcoin. Preiwisch asserts that World ID is "the most privacy-preserving and safest solution for asserting humanness in the age of AI"2. The ban in Spain is part of a broader scrutiny of Worldcoin's operations, with other countries like France, Germany, and Kenya also investigating the company's practices245. Worldcoin has faced technical issues since its launch, and there have been reports of users being unable to claim their tokens after scanning their eyes, as well as instances of the system being tricked into creating multiple accounts for the same person2.
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