Worldcoin registers 200,000 Chileans in LATAM market push
Worldcoin’s pitch for a global currency and digital identity system has arrived in Chile, after facing roadblocks and government censure in Kenya for failing to properly register its biometric data collection activities there.
A Worldcoin release says more than 200,000 people, which accounts for more than one percent of Chile’s total population, have enrolled for free crypto tokens and a World ID digital credential by having their irises scanned with the spherical capture device called the Orb to attain proof-of-personhood. Three Chilean municipalities are currently hosting Worldcoin and its parent company, Tools for Humanity: the coastal cities of Concepción and Viña del Mar, and the capital, Santiago.
People in Chile “are much more sensitive and much more understanding of the fundamental principles of crypto,” says Tools for Humanity’s CEO, Alex Blania. “It’s a combination of having a very technologically advanced country in general and then also a crypto-forward country specifically, which makes it an explosive building ground for the next wave of innovation in this space.”
As the Worldcoin team scales up across the globe, adding to the more than two million users that have already registered their iris scans for a digital ID, they find themselves a little lacking in the orbs department. To respond to unexpected demand, they have had to ramp up manufacturing and distribution operations of the devices, and are recruiting students in markets with universities to help spread adoption.
Blania has underlined the need for governments to fast-track regulations, to allow innovations like Worldcoin to flourish. However, the Sam Altman-founded firm’s disregard for regulations is part of what led to the Kenyan government suspending Worldcoin’s business activities in Kenya, confiscating a number of orbs as well as documents and computers, and calling the company a gang of criminals.
Nor is Kenya the only nation that has cast a wary eye at Worldcoin’s biometric data capture spree. Regulators from the UK, France, Germany, Kenya, Mexico and India have all scrutinized the iris scanning program and its associated cryptocurrency (WLD).
WLD tokens, which are being given away for free to anyone who registers for World ID, suffered a blow in value early in September, but have rebounded over the past two weeks.