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Sam Altman Wants to Scan Your Eyeball in Exchange for Cryptocurrency

His startup Worldcoin is developing an orb-shaped device that can read a person’s iris.

RF eye scan retinal
Photographer: Coneyl Jay/The Image Bank RF/Getty Images

Sam Altman has a new startup that intends to give a special type of cryptocurrency to every person on earth. But first, it wants to scan everybody’s eyeballs.

Altman, the former head of the Silicon Valley business incubator Y Combinator, is one of three founders of the company Worldcoin. Among the many parts of its plan, Worldcoin has designed an orb-shaped device that would scan a person’s iris to construct a unique personal identifier.