Worldcoin Developer Fights Back Against Spain’s Ban on Data Collection

Worldcoin Developer Fights Back Against Spain’s Ban on Data Collection

Worldcoin’s developer, Tools for Humanity, has taken legal action in response to Spain’s recent ban on its data collection and usage within the country. The ban, issued for three months, has prompted Tools for Humanity to file a lawsuit challenging the decision. According to a blog post from Worldcoin on March 6, the regulators in Spain bypassed the usual EU GDPR processes when issuing the ban, leaving Tools for Humanity with no option but to seek legal recourse. Jannick Preiwisch, Tools for Humanity’s data protection officer, has refuted the claims made by Spanish regulators, stating that the organization is in full compliance with EU data protection laws. He expressed disappointment in the regulators’ dissemination of inaccurate information globally, despite Tools for Humanity’s efforts to provide them with a true understanding of Worldcoin and World ID.

Worldcoin asserts that its operations are carried out lawfully in all jurisdictions where it is available, and that it operates under the close supervision of local authorities. The organization highlights its ongoing cooperation with the Bavarian Data Protection Authority (BayLDA), which oversees GDPR compliance in the EU. Despite facing complaints from minors in Spain regarding data privacy and consent withdrawal, Worldcoin maintains that it has responded to GDPR requests from BayLDA over the past few months and will continue to engage with regulators. The ban imposed by Spain’s Data Protection Agency (AEPD) on Worldcoin’s activities is a response to concerns raised by individuals regarding data protection measures and information transparency.

The AEPD specifically cited Worldcoin’s handling of sensitive biometric data as a reason for the ban, noting that such data requires heightened protection. Describing the ban as a precautionary measure during exceptional circumstances, the AEPD expressed fears about potential irreparable harm resulting from current data practices. Tools for Humanity, the organization behind Worldcoin, is the primary target of the ban, as it is recognized as the developer of the open-source Worldcoin project. While Worldcoin Foundation is identified as the steward of Worldcoin, Tools for Humanity is acknowledged as the advisor and operator of the Worldcoin app. Consequently, both the lawsuit filed by Tools for Humanity and its subsequent appeal directly involve Worldcoin and its operations.

The legal battle between Tools for Humanity and Spanish regulators underscores the complexities surrounding data protection and privacy in the digital age. The outcome of this dispute will likely have implications for other technology companies operating within the EU, as it raises questions about the balance between innovation and regulatory compliance. As Worldcoin continues to defend its practices and reputation, the case serves as a reminder of the ongoing challenges in ensuring data security and transparency in an increasingly interconnected world.


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