Worldcoin’s Billion-Dollar Valuation: Crypto Utopia, Privacy Risk, or Both?

Futuristic city with digital currency symbols, Sam Altman presiding over a crowd, iris-scanning device, glowing Ethereum symbol, contrasting light and shadows, cyberpunk style, air of mystery and innovation, debate between utopia and privacy risk, hints of skepticism, optimism, and intrigue.

Worldcoin, the innovative crypto project led by OpenAI CEO Sam Altman, is gaining popularity among investors even though it has not yet exited its beta phase. According to insiders cited by the Financial Times, Worldcoin is actively engaged in discussions for a new financing round, aiming to raise around $100 million. This funding will be supported by both new and existing investors.

Previously, the project’s investment roster has included prominent venture capital firms such as Andreessen Horowitz (a16z) and Khosla Ventures, elevating Worldcoin’s valuation to $3 billion. In October 2021, Worldcoin concluded a $25-million Series A funding round spearheaded by a16z, with other investors featuring Digital Currency Group, Coinbase Ventures, and Multicoin.

Although the project remains in its beta phase, an official launch is being prepared for the next six weeks, sources suggest. However, Worldcoin and OpenAI have yet to confirm these plans to the media.

The ambitious Worldcoin project, co-founded by the notable entrepreneur Sam Altman, is designed to create a universal digital currency, distributed fairly and equitably to everyone around the globe. “Worldcoin is building the world’s largest identity and financial network as a public utility, giving ownership to everyone,” states the project’s website.

By utilizing a proof-of-personhood protocol, Worldcoin’s token distribution process relies upon a biometric scan of an individual’s irises, which is then cross-referenced with a government-issued ID to confirm their identity. This innovative method seeks to ensure that each token is allocated to a unique individual.

Recently, Worldcoin revealed that its World App wallet and World ID—Worldcoin’s unique, privacy-focused decentralized identity protocol—plan to migrate from Polygon to Ethereum’s layer-2 scaling solution, Optimism. This is part of the project’s wider partnership with Optimism Collective.

Despite Worldcoin’s early progress, it has not escaped controversy, with former NSA contractor Edward Snowden voicing concerns about the project’s ethos. Snowden has not only questioned the ethics of implementing human bodies in a crypto project, but also raised alarms about the potential implications of Worldcoin amassing a global database of iris scans in hash format.

Nonetheless, Worldcoin continues to draw interest from investors and maintain its momentum within the crypto community, indicating its potential to disrupt traditional notions of currency distribution and usage.

Overall, the future of Worldcoin remains uncertain, as its ambitious goals and innovative approach may attract both support and skepticism. Until the project’s full potential is unveiled, the crypto world will undoubtedly keep a close eye on its progress.

Source: Decrypt

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