Worldcoin Foundation Introduces Biometric Template Protection System

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Worldcoin Foundation Implements Secure Biometric Template Protection

The Worldcoin Foundation has recently introduced a cutting-edge system utilizing Secure Multi-Party Computation (SMPC) for biometric template protection. This innovative system, developed in collaboration with cryptography engineers from TACEO, marks a significant advancement in ensuring the security and privacy of user data.

Enhanced Privacy Measures

One of the key achievements of this new system is the secure deletion of the previous iris code system. This move comes in response to concerns raised by multiple countries regarding the foundation’s data collection practices. By utilizing SMPC, the foundation aims to enhance transparency and privacy protection for its users.

The new approach encrypts iris codes into multiple secret shares distributed among different parties. These parties collaborate to compute results over the encrypted data without accessing the actual secrets, ensuring a high level of privacy for verifying the uniqueness of biometric templates. The system is now available open source on GitHub for further scrutiny and development.

“By migrating to SMPC, we’ve achieved a significant enhancement in privacy protection for our users. After securely transferring all iris codes to the new system, we deleted the old data.”

Recent optimizations in SMPC protocols for machine learning have enabled Worldcoin and TACEO to apply these protocols to iris code comparisons. This allows Worldcoin to verify an individual’s uniqueness without decrypting the biometric data, ensuring a high level of security.

Regulatory Compliance and Collaboration

The development of this new system followed extensive discussions with data protection authorities, particularly the Bavarian Data Protection Authority (BayLDA). Tools for Humanity and Worldcoin Foundation’s EU establishment are current participants in the SMPC system, with additional third-party participants under consideration.

The announcement comes in the wake of regulatory challenges faced by Worldcoin in various jurisdictions, highlighting the importance of robust privacy technologies. The foundation has been working towards adopting cutting-edge measures to safeguard user data and address concerns over data privacy and security practices.

In addition to the introduction of the SMPC system, the Worldcoin Foundation has implemented other privacy-enhancing measures in 2024. These include personal custody for secure personal information storage, the ability for users to delete their iris codes, and on-site age verification to prevent underage sign-ups.

This new SMPC system represents a significant milestone in the field of biometric security, setting a new standard for privacy protection in digital identity verification. The foundation’s commitment to enhancing privacy and security underscores its dedication to maintaining the trust and confidence of its users.

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Chris Jones

Hey there! 👋 I'm Chris, 34 yo from Toronto (CA), I'm a journalist with a PhD in journalism and mass communication. For 5 years, I worked for some local publications as an envoy and reporter. Today, I work as 'content publisher' for InformOverload. 📰🌐 Passionate about global news, I cover a wide range of topics including technology, business, healthcare, sports, finance, and more. If you want to know more or interact with me, visit my social channels, or send me a message.
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