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Schulmeyer, Julia and Hess, Thomas ORCID logoORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0003-3969-7477 (August 2023): Re-Assessing Privacy in the Blockchain-based Metaverse. 29th Americas Conference on Information Systems (AMCIS 2023), Panama City, Panama, August, 10-12. In: AMCIS 2023 Proceedings. 5,

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The metaverse refers to merging the physical and virtual environments, providing new opportunities for transferring real-world identities into the digital space. Mapping identities into the metaverse is done using blockchain tokens. Therefore, we define the set of metaverse services associated with a blockchain as “blockchain-based metaverse” (BM). While blockchain applications have long been considered more privacy-preserving than centralized applications, we argue that the underlying premises of this assumption have changed for the BM context. Since blockchain transactions are pseudonym-based, it is generally possible to link them to real-world identities. This probability has increased in the BM, making inferences about identities more likely, which completely changes the privacy situation. In our paper, we conceptually re-assess the privacy assumption of blockchains and suggest four propositions to demonstrate how the privacy level changes in the BM. We also provide technical and organizational measures to address the privacy shortcomings and present a research agenda.

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