Worldcoin to stand trial before key government and security officials in Kenya, local media reports

  • Worldcoin debuted en masse in Kenya early in the month, collecting user data through iris scans in exchange for cash incentives.
  • The data collection method raised concerns, with knowledgeable citizens and government officials questioning use of collected data.
  • After suspension, Kenyan government tasked an ad hoc committee to investigate whether project operations complied with the Data Protection Act.
  • Chairing the task team, MP Gabriel Tongoyo has witnesses lined up to testify on the project’s emotive activities.

Worldcoin (WLD) price is down 50% since its market premiere in the last week of July, with the project facing stiff opposition from academics and government officials in different jurisdictions. One authority that has taken a rather bold stance against the project is the Kenyan legislature, commissioning an entire task force to probe the project after its venture in the country earlier in the month.

Also Read:  US legislators oppose Federal Reserve programs that limit bank's interaction with payment stablecoins

Worldcoin in the microscope by Kenyan regulators

The Worldcoin (WLD) project is under the microscope in Kenya after an initiative on August 1 to collect user data in exchange for cash. Specifically, the project would scan the irises (eyeballs) of willing citizens, and give them up to 25 WLD, worth approximately $77.86 at the time of writing?. The transactional endeavor saw many Kenyan’s queue for long hours, looking to capitalize on the easy-come cash while trading their online identity (World ID).

The project, co-founded by Open AI and ChatGPT executive Sam Altman, capitalized on cryptocurrency and biometric registration to create a new kind of global identity service. The goal is to establish a global financial network and identity by showing proof of personhood.

Notably, the project boasts a stark 2,261,457 sign-ups and verifications across 34 countries, including Germany, France, the UK, US, and Kenya, among others. Focusing on Kenya, however, the project’s mode of data collection has raised eyebrows, causing its suspension in the country earlier in the month, followed by an investigative body being structured to probe the project. The committee is made up of government officials and lawmakers.

Local media reports that after an inaugural meeting on August 28, key security personnel in the country- Interior Cabinet Secretary Kithure Kindiki and National Intelligence Service (NIS) Director General Noordin Haji are involved as witnesses in the investigation. Noteworthy, the latter is also the former Director of Public Prosecution, the equivalent of the District Attorney in the US.

Besides the national security personnel, the governance of the Central Bank of Kenya will take the stand against Worldcoin, testifying before the legislature. FXStreet has reached out to the Chair of the committee, a member of parliament (MP), Gabriel Tongoyo, who is yet to respond. Nevertheless, in his statement to local media earlier, the MP said:

Our work is cut out and we shall be calling in a number of witnesses including experts to shed light on this matter.

The team is commissioned to determine the relationship between WLD trading in Kenya and the recent activities of the project in the country’s capital, Nairobi. Among the key questions to answer would be, “What is the source of the money issued to the country’s citizens as an incentive for giving out their iris scan.”

Other committee duties include, “inquiring for necessary legislative interventions that can be made to avert a repetition of such situations in the future.” FXStreet has reached out to MP Tongoyo for a comment, but he has yet to give it.

Jurisdictions where Worldcoin is operating

After opposition in the US and Kenya, Worldcoin remains operational in several jurisdictions, including Hong Kong, Lisbon, Mexico City, New York, Sao Paulo, Seoul, Singapore, and Paris.

Also Read: Worldcoin price dips 46% in a month as Sam Altman’s project faces investigation worldwide

Open Interest, funding rate FAQs

How does Open Interest affect cryptocurrency prices?

Higher Open Interest is associated with higher liquidity and new capital inflow to the market. This is considered the equivalent of increase in efficiency and the ongoing trend continues. When Open Interest decreases, it is considered a sign of liquidation in the market, investors are leaving and the overall demand for an asset is on a decline, fueling a bearish sentiment among investors.

How does Funding rate affect cryptocurrency prices?

Funding fees bridge the difference between spot prices and prices of futures contracts of an asset by increasing liquidation risks faced by traders. A consistently high and positive funding rate implies there is a bullish sentiment among market participants and there is an expectation of a price hike. A consistently negative funding rate for an asset implies a bearish sentiment, indicating that traders expect the cryptocurrency’s price to fall and a bearish trend reversal is likely to occur.

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