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Iris in The Digital Gaze: Unraveling the Worldcoin Project

WorldCoin's integration of iris scanning technology reshapes digital identity and financial inclusion, sparking debates on privacy and security.

Oscar Schmitz
Oscar Schmitz

We explore WorldCoin's ambitious cryptocurrency project, its use of iris biometrics for identification, along with the implications for privacy and data security.

In Privacy Week, an in-depth analysis of this new paradigm shift in privacy and digital identity: Argentina has witnessed exponential growth in interest in WorldCoin, particularly evidenced in the record number of World ID verifications.

This phenomenon reflects a growing curiosity and acceptance of digital identification technologies in the country, where the concept of biometric identification is beginning to leave a significant mark. The increase in World ID verifications suggests not only a fascination with new technologies, but also a willingness towards the adoption of innovative, digital identification systems.

Prove humanity not identity

WorldCoin's focus on "proving humanity, not identity" is a crucial distinction. This approach highlights an emerging trend in digital security: the importance of authenticating individuals not only by their conventional credentials, but also by their unique and immutable attributes. In an increasingly AI-influenced world, where the creation of fake digital identities is a reality, the need for a system that can verify the humanity behind every digital interaction is more crucial than ever.

WorldCoin, by implementing iris scanning to distribute its cryptocurrency, is not only redefining financial inclusion, but is also setting a new standard in how we perceive and validate our existence in the digital realm. This approach has the potential to minimize fraud and increase security in digital transactions, ensuring that behind each transaction there is a real human being and not a manufactured digital entity.

As for future prospects, the WorldCoin case in Argentina can be considered a precursor to a broader transformation in digital identification and security.

We can anticipate an evolution where biometric technology becomes the norm, not only in the financial sphere, but also in other sectors such as national security, healthcare and commerce.

This change also implies a future where privacy and data protection policies must evolve to keep pace with these technologies. Greater collaboration between technology innovators, policymakers, and regulators will be required to ensure that these systems are implemented in ways that protect individual privacy and rights, while taking advantage of their benefits in security and convenience.

Ready to understand how WorldCoin is transforming the world of cryptocurrency and biometric identification? This comprehensive article invites you to learn about the challenges, opportunities and impact of this innovative project. Don't forget to share your opinion about it!

What is iris scanning and how does it work?

Iris scanning is an advanced biometric technology used to uniquely identify individuals through the distinctive characteristics of their irises. Each iris, the colored part of the eye, has a complex and unique pattern, made up of lines, folds and colors that vary from person to person. This uniqueness makes the iris a highly reliable means of identity verification.

The iris scanning process begins with capturing a high-resolution image of the subject's iris. This is usually done using specialized cameras equipped with soft infrared lighting so as not to cause discomfort to the eye. Infrared light is ideal for highlighting detailed iris patterns, which are difficult to discern in the visible light spectrum, especially in dark colored irises.

Once the image is captured, the scanning system uses sophisticated algorithms to analyze the iris pattern. This analysis includes the identification of characteristics such as rings, furcations and crypts present in the iris. This data is then converted into a unique digital code, an "IrisCode". This code is stored in a database and is used for comparison when it is necessary to verify the identity of a person.

One of the main advantages of iris scanning over other forms of biometric identification is its high accuracy and low false positive rate. The iris is relatively immune to physical changes over time, making it more reliable than fingerprints, which can be altered due to injury or manual work. Additionally, iris scanning is a non-invasive and rapid process, making it easy to use in a variety of applications, from airport security to mobile device access and banking systems.

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What makes it special and different in terms of security?

The specialty and difference of iris scanning in terms of security can be attributed to several key features:

  1. Absolute uniqueness: Each iris is absolutely unique. Even identical twins have different iris patterns. This uniqueness is crucial for security systems that require precision in individual identification.
  2. Stability over time: Unlike other biometric characteristics such as fingerprints that can become worn or altered due to external factors, the iris pattern remains stable and virtually unchanged throughout a person's life.
  3. Difficulty of Counterfeiting: The complex and detailed patterns of the iris are extremely difficult to replicate or counterfeit. Advanced iris scanning systems can even detect and differentiate between a real eye and an image or replica.
  4. Non-invasive process: Unlike other biometric methods that require physical contact, iris scanning is a non-invasive process. This not only makes it more hygienic but also more comfortable and accessible for users.
  5. Speed ​​and efficiency: Modern iris scanning systems are capable of quickly capturing and processing data, allowing for almost instantaneous verification. This is crucial in environments where efficiency and speed are essential, such as airport security checkpoints.
  6. Life detection: Some iris scanning systems are equipped with technologies that can detect signs of life, such as natural eye movements or pupil changes, to prevent the use of static images or ocular prostheses.
  7. Diverse Applications: Iris scanning technology is used in a wide range of applications, from access control and homeland security to banking and mobile devices, demonstrating its versatility and reliability.
Iris scanning stands out in the field of biometric security due to its uniqueness, stability, difficulty of falsification, non-invasive nature, efficiency in verification and its ability to detect life.

The accuracy of iris recognition

The precision of iris recognition is a highlight of this biometric technology, distinguished by its high rate of accuracy and reliability. This precision is due to several reasons:

  1. Iris Pattern Complexity: The iris pattern is extremely complex, composed of a multitude of unique characteristics. This complexity provides a large amount of data for analysis, allowing for highly accurate identification.
  2. Low chance of matches: The chance of two irises matching is exceptionally low. Some studies suggest that the chance of a false match is about 1 in 10^78, which is almost astronomically small.
  3. Consistency over time: Unlike other biometric characteristics, the iris remains constant from about a year after birth until the end of life. This stability contributes to the accuracy of recognition over time.
  4. Advanced Technology: Advances in scanning technology and recognition algorithms have significantly improved the ability to accurately capture and analyze complex iris patterns.
  5. Error Minimization: Modern iris scanning systems are designed to minimize errors, both in terms of false positives (incorrect identification) and false negatives (not recognizing the correct person).
  6. Data Richness: A single iris scan can capture a large amount of information, allowing detailed and accurate comparison with templates stored in the database.
The accuracy of iris recognition makes it a valuable and reliable tool for personal identification in various applications, from national security to authentication on personal devices and financial systems.

Advantages and disadvantages of iris scanning

Iris scanning, as a biometric identification technology, has several advantages and disadvantages:


  1. High precision and uniqueness: Each individual's iris is unique and does not change significantly over time. This provides a high level of accuracy in identification and authentication.
  2. Difficult to fake: The complexity of iris patterns makes it extremely difficult to replicate or fake, increasing security against fraud.
  3. Fast and non-invasive: The scanning process is fast and does not require physical contact, making it hygienic and comfortable for users.
  4. Versatility: It can be used in a wide range of applications, from airport security and access control to authentication in mobile devices and banking systems.
  5. Life Detection: Advanced systems can differentiate between a real iris and an image, increasing security.


  1. System Cost and Complexity: Iris scanning technology can be expensive to implement and requires specialized systems and software.
  2. Possible errors in Adverse Conditions: Performance may be affected by external conditions such as inadequate lighting or rapid eye movements.
  3. Privacy Concerns: The collection and storage of biometric data raises concerns about privacy and misuse of personal information.
  4. Potential for eye damage: Although rare, there is minimal concern about exposure to the infrared light used in some scanners.
  5. Exclusion of some users: People with certain visual disabilities or eye diseases may have difficulty using these systems.
While iris scanning offers a secure and efficient solution for identity authentication, it also comes with technical, financial and ethical challenges that must be carefully considered in its implementation.Mientras que el escaneo del iris ofrece una solución segura y eficiente para la autenticación de identidad, también conlleva desafíos técnicos, financieros y éticos que deben ser considerados cuidadosamente en su implementación.
CXO Community: Record interest in World ID in Argentina generates new feature and 500,000 verifications

What is the WorldCoin case?

The WorldCoin case refers to a unique cryptocurrency project that combines iris scanning technology with the distribution of a digital currency. 

It was co-founded by Sam Altman, recognized as one of the creators of OpenAI OpenAI, the company behind developments such as ChatGPT. WorldCoin was created with the goal of providing a universal and secure digital ID, using iris scanning to verify users' identity.

The idea behind WorldCoin is to offer a solution to digital identity challenges in an increasingly interconnected world. By registering and scanning their iris, users receive free cryptocurrency, which also seeks to encourage financial inclusion. This approach has generated both interest and controversy, especially regarding the privacy and security of the biometric data collected.

What personal data does WorldCoin capture?

WorldCoin collects a series of personal data through its scanning device, known as the "Orb". Types of data collected include:

  1. Iris and Eye ImagingThe WorldCoin Orb uses advanced technology to scan and capture detailed images of users' irises. These images are key to generating a unique code associated with each user. 
  2. Three-dimensional images of the face: In addition to the iris, the Orb can capture three-dimensional images of the user's face, adding another layer of biometric data.
  3. Data derived from the above images: These are numerical representations generated from the iris and face images, which are used for computer comparisons and interactions between them.
The data collection process is carried out as follows: users approach the Orb and follow the instructions to have their irises and faces scanned. The device processes these images and creates a unique biometric profile. This profile is converted into an alphanumeric code, which is then associated with the user's digital identity on the WorldCoin platform.

The point of the exchange is to provide users with a unique and secure digital identity, which can be used to access digital services and carry out transactions. At the same time, WorldCoin offers users cryptocurrency as an incentive to participate in its network. This approach seeks to not only expand its user base but also promote financial inclusion, especially in regions where access to traditional banking services may be limited.

This sharing model Este modelo de intercambio has generated debates about ethics and privacy, as it involves the delivery of sensitive biometric data in exchange for financial benefits. The way WorldCoin handles, stores and protects this data is crucial to users' trust and security in the system.

What is the data collected by Worldcoin used for?

The data collected by Worldcoin through its iris scanning technology is used for several key purposes:

  1. Creating a Unique Digital Identity (World ID): The collected iris information is used to generate a "World ID", a unique digital identity for each user. This ID is intended to be a secure and verifiable form of identification in the digital world.
  2. Cryptocurrency Distribution: Worldcoin uses the data to distribute its own cryptocurrency to users. By scanning their iris, users receive a certain number of Worldcoin tokens, incentivizing them to join the network.
  3. Improved security and accuracy: The biometric data collected helps Worldcoin improve the security and accuracy of its identification system. For example, they can use this data to refine their algorithms and ensure that the system correctly identifies each user.
  4. Product development and improvement: The data is used to improve and develop the Worldcoin product, including the Orb scanning device and the World App. This process may include optimizing scanning technology and improving the user experience.
  5. Fraud Prevention and Uniqueness: By collecting unique biometric data, Worldcoin can verify the uniqueness of each user, helping to prevent fraud and ensure that each user has a single account.

It is important to mention that Worldcoin claims that iris image data is handled with privacy and security, being stored in encrypted form or deleted after its initial use to generate the IrisCode. However, the collection and use of biometric data has raised concerns and debate around the privacy and security of personal information.

What risks for users does the collection of this data entail?

Worldcoin's collection of biometric data, such as iris scanning, poses several risks to users:

  1. Privacy Violations : The collection of biometric data can lead to significant privacy concerns. If this data is handled inappropriately or shared without consent, there could be an intrusion into the user's personal privacy.
  2. Risk of data leak: There is a risk that the biometric data collected could be exposed or stolen through a data leak. Since iris data is unique and irreplaceable, a breach could have lasting consequences.
  3. Misuse of data: There are concerns about how data could be used outside of its intended context. This includes misuse by third parties, such as for surveillance or tracking, especially if the data is shared or sold without the user's knowledge.
  4. Risk of discrimination and exclusion: Biometric data collection could be used to discriminate or exclude individuals from certain services or benefits, based on their biological identity.
  5. Impact on anonymity and autonomy: Biometric identification can erode anonymity and personal autonomy, especially in environments where anonymity is crucial to personal safety or freedom of expression.
  6. Informed consent: There is concern that users are not fully informed about how their data will be used and the long-term implications of providing their biometric information.
  7. Technological dependency: Dependency on biometric technology can create vulnerabilities, especially if the systems are not robust or subject to technical failures.

The collection of biometric data may offer benefits in terms of security and convenience, it also presents significant risks that must be carefully considered and managed to protect the privacy and security of users.

What is the exponential purpose of the “global identity” that Worldcoin seeks to achieve?

The exponential purpose of Worldcoin, in terms of “world identity”, is to create a global and accessible digital identification system that allows people to prove their individuality in a unique and secure way. This system is based on the use of iris scanning to generate a "World ID" for each user, providing a form of digital identification that is almost impossible to duplicate or falsify due to the uniqueness of the iris patterns. 

Worldcoin's goal is to facilitate broader financial inclusion through its cryptocurrency , allowing people around the world, especially those in regions with limited access to traditional banking services, to participate in the digital economy. By offering cryptocurrency in exchange for iris scanning, Worldcoin seeks to integrate a large number of people into its network, thus promoting a more inclusive and decentralized economic system.

Additionally, the project seeks to provide a solution to current digital identity challenges, especially in a world where the presence and influence of artificial intelligence is increasing. The "World ID" could be used to securely authenticate the identity of users on various digital platforms and services, thus protecting against fraud and improving security in online transactions.

Establish a universal digital identity that not only improves security and identity verification in the digital sphere, but also promotes global financial and economic inclusion.

How has WorldCoin impacted the cryptocurrency market and biometric identification?

WorldCoin has impacted the cryptocurrency market and the field of biometric identification in several significant ways:

  1. Innovation in cryptocurrency distribution– WorldCoin introduces a new model in the cryptocurrency market by distributing its digital currency in exchange for scanning users' irises. This approach has drawn attention to alternative forms of cryptocurrency distribution, moving away from traditional methods such as mining or direct purchasing.
  2. Fusing biometric technology with digital finance: By using iris scanning to create unique digital identities, WorldCoin has combined biometric identification with financial transactions. This represents a significant step towards the integration of biometric technologies in the financial sector.
  3. Debate on privacy and security: The project has generated extensive debate on the privacy and security of biometric data. Concerns revolve around the storage, handling and potential misuse of sensitive biometric data, impacting public perceptions of privacy in the area of ​​​​cryptocurrencies and biometric identification.
  4. Financial inclusion: WorldCoin proposes a model that could improve financial inclusion, especially in regions with limited access to banking services. By offering a form of digital identification and access to cryptocurrencies, the project aims to integrate a greater number of people into the global economy.
  5. Regulatory and legal challenges: Integrating biometric identification into cryptocurrency transactions poses new regulatory challenges. Governments and regulators are examining how this approach fits into existing cryptocurrency and data protection regulations..
  6. Promoting research and development in biometrics: WorldCoin has encouraged research and development in the field of biometric identification, promoting innovation in iris scanning technologies and their application in various contexts.

When considering the legal perspective of the Worldcoin project and its use of iris scanning, there are several aspects covered and not covered by current legislation and regulations:

  1. Consent : Privacy laws in many jurisdictions require that explicit consent be obtained from users before collecting biometric data.
  2. Protection of personal data : Regulations such as the GDPR in the EU establish strict standards for the secure handling and storage of personal data, including biometrics.
  3. Right to information: Users have the right to be informed about how their data will be used and with whom it will be shared.
  4. Right to deletion : In many jurisdictions, users can request deletion of their personal data from companies' databases.
  5. Data security : Laws require companies to implement appropriate security measures to protect personal data against unauthorized access or misuse.
  1. Use of biometric data for cryptocurrencies : There are no specific legislations that address the exchange of biometric data for digital assets such as cryptocurrencies.
  2. Jurisdiction and global reach : The global nature of projects like Worldcoin poses challenges regarding jurisdiction and enforcement of data protection laws.
  3. Privacy standards interoperability : There is a lack of uniformity in privacy standards between different countries, which complicates compliance for international projects.
  4. Protection against biometric discrimination : There are no specific regulations that address the possibility of discrimination based on biometric data.
  5. Secondary use of biometric data : Current regulation does not adequately address the risks associated with secondary use of biometric data, such as use for surveillance or non-consensual purposes.

WorldCoin, in its implementation, has encountered several legal and ethical challenges, which have generated debate and concern in different sectors:

  1. Protection of personal data : The handling and storage of iris biometric data raises concerns about the protection of personal data. Legislation in many countries requires careful and secure handling of this data, including informed consent from users.
  2. Compliance with international regulations s: Given its global operation, WorldCoin faces the challenge of complying with a variety of international data protection laws and regulations, such as the GDPR in Europe.
  3. Data security risks : The legal obligation to protect collected data from unauthorized access or data leaks is a significant challenge, especially considering the sensitivity of biometric information.
  4. Transparency and consent : Ensuring that users are fully informed and consent to the use of their biometric data is essential, requiring clarity and transparency in data collection practices.
  5. Jurisdiction and dispute resolution : Determining the applicable jurisdiction and dispute resolution mechanisms in case of legal problems is complex in a project with global reach like WorldCoin.

Ethical challenges

  1. Biometric Privacy: The collection of biometric data raises ethical concerns about individual privacy and the right to control one's personal information.
  2. Informed consent: There is an ethical challenge in ensuring that users provide genuinely informed consent, especially in regions with language barriers or limitations in technological understanding.
  3. Use of financial incentives: Offering cryptocurrency as an incentive for biometric data collection raises ethical questions about exploitation and consent under economic influence.
  4. Discrimination and exclusion: The risk of exclusion or discrimination of individuals who are unable or unwilling to participate in biometric identification systems is an ethical concern.
  5. Long-term use of biometric data: The long-term implications of the storage and potential use of biometric data, including the possibility of surveillance or tracking, present significant ethical dilemmas.

Together, these challenges reflect the complexity of implementing technology that crosses the boundaries of legality and ethics in the realm of digital identification and cryptocurrency.

What expectations are projected in WorldCoin?

WorldCoin, emerging as a disruptive fusion of biometric technology and digital finance, is positioned on the threshold of a new era in identification and financial inclusion.

This visionary project not only promises to reshape the way we interact with the digital and financial world, but also raises challenges and opportunities that could redefine privacy and security norms in the digital age.

Worldcoin's future challenges and prospects, as well as its growth expectations, cover several aspects:


  1. User acceptance and trust: Worldcoin must overcome privacy and security concerns to gain public trust and acceptance. Sensitivity around biometric data is a major hurdle.
  2. Data protection regulations: Navigating the complex regulatory environment in different jurisdictions, especially with regards to the protection of personal and biometric data, is a significant challenge.
  3. Security and data protection: Ensuring the security of biometric data against potential breaches and abuse is crucial to the long-term viability of the project.
  4. Integration with the global financial system: Effectively integrating the Worldcoin cryptocurrency into the global financial system and achieving acceptance by financial regulators and banking institutions is another challenge.
  5. Equity and accessibility: Ensure that the project is equitable and accessible to people from all regions and socioeconomic strata, avoiding digital exclusion.

Future perspectives

  1. Global financial inclusion: Worldcoin has the potential to promote greater financial inclusion, especially in regions where access to banking services is limited.
  2. Advancement in biometric identification : The project could pioneer the practical application of biometric identification, setting new standards in the field.
  3. Cryptocurrency innovation: Could drive new ways of distributing and using cryptocurrencies, expanding their use beyond traditional markets.

Future Growth

  1. Expanding user base: Worldcoin aims to grow exponentially in terms of users, especially in emerging and developing markets.
  2. Continued technological development: The project is expected to continue to innovate its technology, improving the efficiency and safety of iris scanning.
  3. Strategic collaborations: Through partnerships with governments, financial institutions and other entities, Worldcoin seeks to expand its reach and applicability.
  4. Adoption of World ID: The prospect of “World ID” becoming a standard form of digital identification globally is a key growth expectation.
  5. Overcoming regulatory and ethical obstacles: Striking a balance between innovation and regulatory compliance will be crucial for its expansion and acceptance.

Your success will largely depend on how you manage these challenges and adapt to changing market conditions and regulations.

With its unique focus on utilizing iris scanning to distribute cryptocurrencies, WorldCoin ventures into uncharted territory, uniting biometric identification with the global digital economy. This ambitious project stands at a crossroads of innovation and controversy, navigating a sea of ​​legal and ethical complexities as it seeks to establish a new paradigm in digital identity and financial access.



  1. CXO Community. (2024, January). Record interest in World ID in Argentina generates a new feature and 500,000 verifications. Recovered from
  2. BDO Argentina. (2024, January). Data privacy. Retrieved from
  3. Recalde, A. (2024, January). Advances in facial recognition technology and its impact on privacy. LinkedIn. Retrieved from
  4. Activist Post. (2024, enero). Worldcoin is now in Singapore as its iris biometrics project grows globally. Recuperado de
  5. BeInCrypto. (2023, December). Worldcoin needs this to happen to succeed outside India. Retrieved from
  6. Yahoo Finance. (2023, septiembre). Factbox-Scrutiny of iris-scanning crypto project Worldcoin grows. Recuperado de
  7. The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. Facial recognition: Current capabilities, future prospects, and governance. Recuperado de

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🚀 Inspire people from BEING impossible by making POSSIBLE 💡 🚀 Transformational Coach, Knowmad, Entrepreneur, Innovator and Digital / Exponential Transformer. 🚀 Ambassador @OpenEXO | EXO Advisor