Standard Chartered Visa Card with US dollars
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Facebook announced a crypto and regulators are as slammed as a mouse in cat territory. It’s not too surprising that offcials in the US and outside the US have some questions once you consider the history of FB.
In the United States, Maxine Waters a congresswoman has sounded the alarm on Facebook’s activity and was cautious about just how much reach and influence the technology company could end up having:
With the announcement that it plans to create a cryptocurrency, Facebook is continuing its unchecked expansion and extending its reach into the lives of its users.
Given the company’s troubled past, I am requesting that Facebook agree to a moratorium on any movement forward on developing a cryptocurrency until Congress and regulators have the opportunity to examine these issues and take action.
Once you take into consideration that Facebook has been guilty of neglecting user privacy and been embroiled in one scandal after the other for the better part of three years, it’s understandable that people in government would want to understand how Libra works before giving Facebook a pass and allowing them to proceed. Facebook hasn’t done much to protect the public and owning a currency isn’t proof that they’ll suddenly change their approach and protect the interests of the people who have the currency.
In Europe the scepticism is also present, with French Finance minister saying that Facebook’s crypto should not be the only currency. Bloomberg reports the statement as follows:
“It is out of question’’ that Libra “become a sovereign currency,’’ Le Maire said in an interview on Europe 1 radio. “It can’t and it must not happen.”
Whilst crypto enthusiasts will not be too excited at the prospect of this ban as Facebook might have a greater chance of pushing cryptocurrencies into the mainstream, the truth is that Facebook hasn’t done it’s best with the influence it already has and thus politicians and regulators will no doubt scrutinize Libra with a lot of scepticism. Maybe that is what is necessary for the protection of the billions who might have access to this currency if it is as ubiquitous as Facebook wishes…
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The Financial Gazette