Chinese carrier China Mobile touted a “digital identity system” to regulate the Metaverse and prevent chaos and rumors from spreading in the digital world.
China may be banning cryptocurrency-related activities, but it is in serious preparation for the Metaverse. But privacy champions are skeptical of digital identity systems.
according to Politico, China’s digital identity system for the metaverse has striking similarities to its social credit system. Digital ID systems are designed to collect personal data such as a user’s occupation, identifiable signs, and other similar data.
Additionally, China Mobile has suggested that law enforcement agencies permanently store this data in order to maintain a secure environment within the Metaverse. He believes personal data could help police investigate bad guys in the virtual world.
The International Telecommunications Union (ITU), the information and communications agency of the United Nations, launched a special group for Metaverse regulation in December 2022. A Politico report said the Metaverse group is likely to vote on China’s proposal this October.
However, the proposal has been harshly criticized by experts because of its similarities to the social credit system. Friends of Europe’s Chris Cremidus Courtney said:
“Creating a unified digital identity system and giving each human being a unique digital identity that includes social characteristics from social media and occupation is very similar to China’s social credit system.”
China’s social credit system is a regulatory framework for assessing the credibility of individuals. A low score can lead to various blacklists, such as being blocked from using public transportation.
Meanwhile, various forecasts point to China’s metaverse industry heading for exponential growth. BE in April[IN]CRYPTO reports that China’s metaverse industry is expected to grow by 40% in 2023.
Click here to read our article on the Top 10 Metaverse Platforms to Watch in 2023.
According to Statista, the metaverse industry will grow at least seven times by 2030. This year, the sector is valued at $12.6 billion and is projected to reach $87.6 billion in valuation over the next seven years.
Besides China, various other countries are also considering monitoring the Metaverse. In May 2023, Hong Kong launched CyberDefender Metaverse to combat Metaverse crimes such as fraud, hacking, theft and sex crimes.
Prior to that, in October 2022, Interpol launched the Metaverse for law enforcement agencies around the world. And Dubai’s Ajman Police became the first law enforcement agency to offer its services through the Metaverse.
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