The Worldcoin Foundation expressed disappointment with the recent decision by Hong Kong authorities to ban the crypto project due to alleged privacy violations.

Worldcoin has responded to a recent request by the Hong Kong Privacy Commissioner's Office (PCPD) to cease operations of the project in the administrative region. A Worldcoin spokesperson said the organization operates legally and fully complies with all local regulations governing the collection and use of information, including the Privacy Regulations.

The Worldcoin Foundation emphasized that its mission is to prepare humanity for the age of artificial intelligence (AI) by raising the bar for privacy standards through data reduction, user control over their data, and multi-party settlement. These measures should ensure that user data is processed with the highest level of security and confidentiality.

Worldcoin explained that to enhance privacy, users will have the ability to unverify their World ID. This involves permanently deleting their iris code or their encrypted Secure Computing Code (SMPC) components. These components themselves do not reveal personal information about any individual, and the data is stored in a decentralized manner.

“Unfortunately, the Hong Kong authorities overlooked these aspects when assessing our identity verification process. Hong Kong regulators did not take these privacy improvements into account before banning our project,” said a Worldcoin Foundation spokesperson.

In March, Worldcoin management promised that about 4.5 million users would be able to independently store images and any metadata collected by the Worldcoin Orb device on their gadgets.