Zuckerberg Links Up with Democratic Lawmakers Concerned About Libra Cryptocurrency

Facebook’s CEO Mark Zuckerberg held a meeting on Wednesday with about six US lawmakers over a dinner in Washington, Washington Post reports. The dinner meeting primarily focused on Facebook’s Libra crypto project.

Intelligence Committee vice chair Senator Mark Warner was pivotal in organizing the dinner meeting with Zuckerberg at an undisclosed restaurant in Washington. According to Warner, the legislators explained their issues ranging from privacy, vile content and how the issues can be handled.

While the discussion was about various issues about Facebook, the lawmakers took a keen interest to ask specific questions about Facebook’s intended cryptocurrency, the Libra. The cryptocurrency has yielded lots of scrutiny from different quarters especially lawmakers and other policy makers in the world.

One of the key concerns from the lawmakers is the fact that Libra representatives had indicated that if the project failed to get approved in America, it will not be launched in another country. Warner raised concern that Facebook might have duped the lawmakers with such an assurance as there are indications that Libra may be launched in another country in the near future.

According to Warner, Zuckerberg must have understood the concerns of the lawmakers and as such, the lawmaker wonders whether Facebook would want to launch the Libra crypto before getting approved by the US authorities.

Another lawmaker present during the dinner, Sen. Richard Blumenthal, said that he was thrilled by the interest exhibited by Zuckerberg saying that the dinner meeting was constructive as the most pressing issues facing the larger tech space were canvassed and he was much interested in the measures taken by the company to safeguard privacy.

According to Cointelegraph, Zuckerberg is set to spend more days in Washington meeting with various policy makers to talk about internet regulatory on various issues like privacy, handling of rivalry as well as how to deal with election matters. These meetings comes just a few weeks after the intense grilling of the Libra cryptocurrency by the US Congress.

Libra has been facing increased challenges ahead of its official launch scheduled for next year. Earlier this month, French Finance Minister stated that his country will not allow the launching of Libra within the European Union. Additionally, German Finance Minister has claimed that Libra will create a parallel currency that might undermine sovereignty.

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Author: Joseph Kibe

Germany’s Grand Coalition Looks To Deny All Private Stablecoins Like Facebook’s Crypto Libra

France and Germany have agreed to block Facebook’s Libra cryptocurrency. In a joint statement, the two governments confirmed that no private entity can claim monetary power, which is inherent to the sovereignty of nations.

The EU is taking a tough, regulatory-laden approach to Facebook’s Libra, and is considering coming up with a common set of rules for cryptocurrencies in general. ECB board member Benoit Coeure said that when Facebook announced Libra, it was a “wake-up call” for Europe to come up with a cryptocurrency of its own.

Thomas Heilmann of the center-right Christian Democratic Union (CDU) says:

“Up to now, the economy has done a great job in countering crises and inflation with measures taken by central banks. Once a digital currency provider dominates the market, it will be quite difficult for competitors.”

The federal government can certainly envisage a state-stable cryptocurrency. It also provides for its own state block chain and a new digital corporate form for companies: The digital corporation is to facilitate start-ups in this area.

In Switzerland, Libra is applying for a payment service license, although it could face rules that typically apply to banks, regulators in the non-EU Alpine state said on Wednesday. In China, the central bank is accelerating efforts to launch the country’s digital yuan project. This move is also part of China’s plan to block Libra.

The bitcoin price has soared so far this year, climbing some 200% as expectations around Facebook’s libra, and bitcoin and cryptocurrency interest from some of the world’s biggest technology companies have driven a fresh wave of bitcoin investment.

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Author: Sritanshu Sinha

New Open-Source Code Vulnerability Was Found and Fixed In Facebook’s Libra

A recently discovered vulnerability on the open-source protocol of Facebook’s Libra was just fixed. The vulnerability was originally discovered by OpenZeppelin, a third-party audit company that is focused on crypto products.

The developers of the company have found some vulnerabilities in the scripting language created by Facebook, which is called Move. According to the company, the vulnerabilities were pretty severe and could lead to huge problems if the code went online before they were addressed.

OpenZeppelin’s CEO Demian Brener affirmed that one of the vulnerabilities allowed hackers to use smart contracts disguised as inline comments and they could use it to steal money. Fortunately, the issues have been patched as soon as possible, so these flaws will never actually see the light of day.

The auditor company was originally created back in 2015 and it has worked with several high-profile initiatives so far, including organizations such as the Ethereum Foundation, Coinbase, and the Brave browser.

The Move script was mostly devised by the developers of Calibra, the company created by Facebook to handle the project. They have defined the most important features of the technology, but since the code is open, anyone can give their opinions on what works or not.

According to Brener, audits are becoming more important to the industry each day. Crypto projects are getting considerably bigger as time passes, so more third-party audits are needed for them to work well, as no team can completely audit them alone.

Libra has a very complex system, just like many other recent tokens. These products will be used to manage a lot of money, so making sure that they work well is needed.

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Author: Gabriel Machado

Facebook Eyes a New Blockchain Policy Expert In Africa To Enable Crypto Payments With WhatsApp

While the whole work is looking at Facebook’s new project Libra, Facebook is looking at Sub-Saharan Africa. According to a recent job opening, the company is looking for a policy expert in Africa that could ensure that payments are made in the countries of the continent using WhatsApp. While the job posting does not mention Libra, it is expected that the job will have some relation to it.

Libra will let Facebook allow crypto transfers using WhatsApp, so it is likely that the company will be used for this. The company declined to talk about the subject when reached out by media outlets. The position is for Johannesburg, in South Africa.

WhatsApp was originally acquired back in 2014 by Facebook and it is the most popular messaging app in the continent. Mobile ways to use money are very popular there, so it can surely be a fertile ground for Facebook.

At the moment, Facebook is struggling to have the Libra token approved in the U. S. and Europe and some countries such as India and China will probably ban it, so looking at Africa is far from a bad idea. If the deal goes sour there, at least the company knows that it can have a pretty active market in a continent where the legislation may not be so harsh with the initiative.

Right now, Facebook is filling in several positions for people to work towards creating its cryptocurrency. The launch is expected to happen in 2020, so the social media giant is making a huge effort to create a strong product and to convince regulators to let the launch happen.

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Author: Gabriel Machado

Taiwanese Crypto Company Maicoin Wants To Be A Part of the Libra Association

By now, most people have already realized what a powerful asset Facebook’s Libra coin will be in case it is ever allowed to exist. Because of this, a Taiwanese crypto company called Maicoin has decided to try for a membership at the Libra Association, which will be the validator for Libra.

According to the local media outlets, Maicoin wants to work on the development of the upcoming Libra stablecoin and to operate its own Libra node.

The CEO of the company, Alex Liu, has affirmed that he is confident on Maicoin’s chances. According to him, the company has already reached Facebook and it has argued that the team has the expertise to be a part of the team and that it has over 20 million users.

Another reason for the partnership to be approved is that Maicoin would not need any special permissions to be a part of the project, as it already has everything that it needs.

Facebook is certainly looking at Asian markets for the launch of its token, so more partnerships with local companies would certainly be important. China will certainly not allow Libra and India is very likely to ban the token, too, so looking for strategic partnerships in smaller countries seems like a good idea.

At the moment, Facebook is on its mission to receive permission to launch Libra. The company has been facing several issues in the European Union and the United States. In both places, regulators and lawmakers are pretty scared of how Facebook handles the security of its customers’ data and about the monopoly potential of the project.

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Author: Lillian Peter

Facebook’s Libra Movement Receives Backlash in Washington About Cryptocurrency Project

Facebooks-Crypto-Plan-Draws-Criticism-From-Washington

Facebook’s Libra plan has once more been criticized. This time, however, the complaints do not come from the crypto community, which is fairly negative on the whole project, but from the government of the United States.

A letter signed by over 30 influential groups in Washington was recently sent to Facebook. The letter demanded the project to be halt immediately as there were “profound questions” about the project, as reported by Bloomberg.

This letter was signed by five congressional committees’ leaders and the main point was that the regulators were simply not prepared to deal with something like the Libra project right now.

In their view, the project of the social network company would still need to address some questions and concerns before the project could be allowed to move forward and be really launched in the United States.

Maxime Walters, the House Financial Services Committee Chairwoman, affirmed that she believed that Facebook’ Libra posed a risk that was simply too big to be allowed to go forward with so many questions without a proper answer.

Facebook did not publicly respond to the letter until the time of this report.

Facebook’s Libra Will Have A Hard Time Being Regulated

If cryptocurrencies posed a huge problem for regulators who were uncertain of how to deal with them, the truth is that Libra is possibly even more troublesome, mostly because Facebook is huge. The reach of a project such as this one is unseen in history and we all know that Libra has the potential to reach even more people than Bitcoin did.

When that happens, how will the world react? Facebook has announced the Libra Association, which has companies such as Mastercard, Visa, Paypal and Uber in its ranks, but most people are still afraid that the new token could be way too centralized.

Governments such as India have already indicated that maybe Facebook’s Libra will not be welcome there, while other governments, such as the Russian, will treat it just like any other crypto.

The United States will possibly provide a good thermometer for how difficult it will be for Facebook to get approval and, so far, it does not really seem that it will be very easy. Libra is still far from its launch but the team behind the new cryptocurrency already has a lot of problems to solve.

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Author: Gabriel Machado

Facebook Is Looking To Achieve Global Regulatory Compliance as Libra Vies for New York BitLicense

Facebook-Is-Looking-To-Achieve-Global-Regulatory-Compliance-Company-Applied-for-New-York-BitLicense

Facebook’s Libra coin, the new initiative from the company in order to create its own crypto and bring a frictionless and globally-available currency to all its clients is looking to get the New York BitLicense, considered the hardest regulatory approval to get in the United States.

The company is taking all the steps to appease regulators all over the world before the launch of Libra, but many experts seem to be concerned that the company will not have a fully successful enterprise this time.

In order to achieve its global regulatory compliance, Facebook will have to carefully deal with central banks and financial regulators from several countries. This will involve thousands of officers from dozens of countries.

According to Sean Park, the founder of CIO of Anthemis, a venture capital company, Facebook is far from having won the battle so far. This is not to say that the company has not made any kind of progress. Calibra, the subsidiary that will oversee the token and its wallet, has been already registered with the U. S. Financial Crimes and Enforcement Network (FinCEN), for instance.

Trying to obtain the BitLicense from New York’s Department of Financial Services is another smart move because it generally takes a long time and Facebook may even get rejected, so the company needs to work very carefully here.

Obviously, Facebook is not only dealing with U. S.-based regulators. The company has already been talking with Britain’s Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), the Bank of England and FINMA, the Swiss financial regulator. Recently, the Russian Ministry of Finance also affirmed that Libra will be treated just like any other token in the country, too.

Facebook Will Not Get A Free Pass

Even if Facebook is right in making all these steps as soon as possible, the company is far from having a free pass, in Park’s opinion. As soon as the product is launched, the authorities of the United States, European Union and India are going to be looking closely to the new coin.

The Central Bank of Singapore also seemed somewhat skeptic of the token and affirmed that it would require more information about the project before being able to allow it.

As you may know, Facebook is also being accused of leaking private information, so the global confidence in the company is far from high right now. If Facebook already had troubles with regulators, things are bound to take a turn for the worse with Libra.

Obviously, it should be remembered that Libra is not set out to be the new Facebook Coin. The new token is also managed by the Libra Association, which contains companies such as Uber, Mastercard, Visa, Paypal and others and is based in Geneva.

While Facebook is expecting the scrutiny, nobody knows how harsh the global regulators will actually be. The Bank of International Settlements, for instance, is already expected to place some restrictions on this new currency. The chair of the Financial Stability Board, Randal Quarles, is also reported to have affirmed that the company needs bigger scrutiny in order to be allowed to launch Libra.

According to representatives from Facebook, Libra is not planning to acquire any local banking licenses and all the value that the token will have will come from investment in government bonds and currencies, just like governments do with their sovereign fiat currencies.

These reserves, as affirmed by a Representative of the company to Reuters, will also fully follow the monetary policies of the countries that hold these assets.

At the moment, not a lot is known about Facebook’s ability to discover money laundering and tax evasion or fraud, so the company will have to take care of that before it can be whitelisted by international regulators which are often worried about this kind of question.

Jeff Bandman, a former U. S. Commodies Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) executive, has affirmed that Facebook has not yet fully considered the position that it is taking. To him, the company will use this year to figure that out and to narrow (and rescale) its project.

He affirmed this because he believes that such a huge project in an attempt to disrupt the global financial system is a very audacious plan and it has to be laid out well if it is supposed to work.

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Author: Gabriel Machado

Facebook’s Project Libra Gets Demolished By BitMEX’s Op-Ed By CEO Arthur Hayes

Facebooks-Project-Libra-Gets-Demolished-By-BitMEXs-Op-Ed-By-CEO-Arthur-Hayes
  • Facebook’s Libra seems to be an ETF rather than a digital currency
  • Arthur Hayes seems to be bullish about the effect this can have on Bitcoin

Facebook has recently released a new project called Libra that aims at helping users transact funds between borders, make payments and purchase things, including goods and services. However, there are many crypto enthusiasts that are not so excited about Facebook’s new project. One of them is Arthur Hayes, the CEO of the cryptocurrency exchange BitMex, that wrote a very hard op-ed regarding Facebook’s Libra project.

Arthur Hayes Demolishes Facebook’s Libra

The article that Mr. Hayes wrote is titled “Libra: Zuck Me Gently.” He starts by saying that Libra is not decentralized or censorship resistant, thus, it cannot be considered a stablecoin. This is a point that has been addressed in different occasions since the virtual currency will be controlled at all times in order to be compliant with regulations around the world.

In addition to it, Libra is going to be backed by different fiat currencies around the world, which would make of it a so-called stablecoin. Hayes explains that Libra is going to be destroying all stablecoins in the market.

Hayes went on explaining that the digital currency is going to be working in a similar way as central banks, which is going to be damaging the power that states and central authorities have over individuals around the world. And he believes that this is a good thing.

On the matter, Hayes wrote:

“The speed at which government officials rushed to admonish Libra tells you there is some potential positive value to human society embedded in the project.”

He considers that Libra is not a threat to financial privacy, which has been already gone in the past. The new digital currency and project is going to encourage people to understand that there is a new system that could work as an alternative. He also considers that this is positive for Bitcoin (BTC) because there are going to be several new users learning about the most popular digital asset that could eventually start using it.

Nevertheless, the article that Hayes wrote tries to show that Libra looks like a new investment tool rather than a cryptocurrency. The author of the article says that Libra works in a similar way as an exchange-traded fund (ETF), a recognized financial instrument that pays out interest from a basket of assets.

At the moment, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has not approved the first Bitcoin ETF in the market, and there were several proposals already presented in the market that none of them was approved.

In a recent article that was written by Dave Nadig, the managing director of ETF.com, explained that Libra is indeed an ETF rather than a digital currency. He explained that resellers will integrate with exchanges and other institutions that buy and sell cryptocurrencies to users, and will provide liquidity for users that want to convert from cash to Libra and back again.

The CEO of BitMEX said that the most significant disadvantage for Libra is that holders do not appear to be entitled to receive the investment income.

Currently, there are several countries around the world that are trying to understand how to better regulate Libra. The United Kingdom, the United States, France and Singapore are just some of the countries that are evaluating which is going to be the impact of the digital currency in their countries.

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Author: Carl T

Bary Silbert Looks at Facebook’s Crypto Coin as the Catalyst to Propel Digital Assets to Mass Adoption

Bary Silbert Looks at Facebook’s Crypto Coin as the Catalyst to Propel Digital Assets to Mass Adoption
  • Details about Facebook’s GlobalCoin to be revealed next week
  • Heavyweight players backing this project that doesn’t have “any innovation in it”

Facebook’s GlobalCoin project, known as Project Libra is all set to reveal its cryptocurrency next week but it is still a long way to go until it can be used. Sources having knowledge of Facebook’s operations attributed the delay to blockchain industry incumbents being reluctant to work on a project that doesn’t have the hallmarks of a true cryptocurrency.

The crypto payment platform apparently has the backing of some heavyweight players including Mastercard Inc., PayPal Holdings Inc, Visa Inc., and Uber Technologies.

This list of hackers could also include crypto trading platform Coinbase, venture capital firms Andreessen Horowitz and Union Square Ventures along with Spotify Technology.

“WHOA. Facebook cryptocurrency is also reportedly supported by: Andreessen Horowitz, Union Square Ventures, Thrive Capital, Lyft, eBay, Spotify, Coinbase, Kiva, Vodafone. Don’t bet against one of the most successful companies in the world,” commented Morgan Creek Digital’s Anthony Pompliano on Twitter.

Institutional Attention & Driving Efficiency in the Space

However, this might not be good news as some industry experts believe this could create a system with ample power that can drive anti-competitiveness while having limited accountability.

Per the details that have emerged so far, this GlobalCoin, whose value will be pegged to the fiat currencies will be used to make payments on Facebook.

“There’s just not any innovation in it,” said Gabor Gurbacs, director of digital asset strategy at VanEck/MVIS. “It’s just Silicon Valley’s ongoing attempt to take bank profits from the financial services industry to Silicon Valley.”

Unlike popular and traditional cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin, Facebook’s crypto will be centralized.

However, according to Digital Currency Group’s Barry Silbert, it would be bullish for Bitcoin and digital currencies which he says will go down in history as “The Catalyst” in driving the mass adoption of digital assets.

A similar sentiment is shared by Garrick Hileman, head of research at Blockchain.com who told Barrons,

“It may be the most important announcement this year and one of the most important developments in the history of cryptocurrencies. Anytime an organization the size of Facebook with billions of users comes out and says they’re going to be using blockchain and cryptocurrency, that’s a very significant validation of the technology.”

Reports indicate that the company has hired payment experts and also spoken with regulators. GlobalCoin in no way is a threat to the leading cryptocurrency but could compete against so-called stablecoin and according to some could be a “Ripple killer” as well.

The good thing about Facebook coming with its own currency is as Gurbacs puts it that the large institutions are paying attention that will eventually drive efficiency in the space and their skin in the game.

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Author: AnTy