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US Legislators Call for Halt to Facebook’s Cryptocurrency Plans – And to Face Congress

US Legislators Call for Halt to Facebook’s Cryptocurrency Plans – And to Face CongressUS Legislators Call for Halt to Facebook’s Cryptocurrency Plans – And to Face Congress

On the News of Facebooks’ foray into cryptocurrency Monday, some Democratic and Republican leaders of the House Financial Services Committee called for Facebook to appear before Congress to testify on its plans for a cryptocurrency called Libra.

In a statement to Reuters, Maxine Waters, who chairs the House Financial Services Committee, said Facebook should halt development of Libra, until Congress and regulators can review the issue, and called on company executives to testify before Congress.

US Legislators Call for Halt to Facebook’s Cryptocurrency Plans – And to Face CongressUS Legislators Call for Halt to Facebook’s Cryptocurrency Plans – And to Face Congress

“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,” the California Democrat said in a press release.

According to Reuters, Rep. Patrick McHenry, the top GOP member of the panel endorsed the call for hearings.

“While there is great promise for this new technology in fostering financial inclusion and faster payments, particularly in the developing world, we know there are many open questions as to the scope and scale of the project,” McHenry wrote in a letter to Waters asking for hearings. “It is incumbent upon us as policymakers to understand Project Libra.”

Waters stated that Facebook’s data privacy scandals make it a poor choice to launch a worldwide financial network.

“Facebook has data on billions of people and has repeatedly shown a disregard for the protection and careful use of this data,” she said. “It has also exposed Americans to malicious and fake accounts from bad actors, including Russian intelligence and transnational traffickers. Facebook has also been fined large sums and remains under a Federal Trade Commission consent order for deceiving consumers and failing to keep consumer data private, and has also been sued by the government for violating fair housing laws on its advertising platform.”

The announcement is likely to further calls for regulatory oversight of the crypto market, with Waters calling it a “wake-up call” for federal agencies.

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US Legislators Call for Halt to Facebook’s Cryptocurrency Plans – And to Face CongressUS Legislators Call for Halt to Facebook’s Cryptocurrency Plans – And to Face Congress

About Richard Kastelein

Founder and publisher of industry publication Blockchain News (EST 2015), a partner at ICO services collective Token.Agency ($750m+ and 90+ ICOs and STOs), director of education company Blockchain Partners (Oracle Partner) – Vancouver native Richard Kastelein is an award-winning publisher, innovation executive and entrepreneur. He sits on the advisory boards of some two dozen Blockchain startups and has written over 1500 articles on Blockchain technology and startups at Blockchain News and has also published pioneering articles on ICOs in Harvard Business Review and Venturebeat. Irish Tech News put him in the top 10 Token Architects in Europe.

Kastelein has an Ad Honorem – Honorary Ph.D. and is Chair Professor of Blockchain at China’s first Blockchain University in Nanchang at the Jiangxi Ahead Institute of Software and Technology. In 2018 he was invited to and attended University of Oxford’s Saïd Business School for Business Automation 4.0 programme.  Over a half a decade experience judging and rewarding some 1000+ innovation projects as an EU expert for the European Commission’s SME Instrument programme as a startup assessor and as a startup judge for the UK government’s Innovate UK division.

Kastelein has spoken (keynotes & panels) on Blockchain technology in Amsterdam, Antwerp, Barcelona, Beijing, Brussels, Bucharest, Dubai, Eindhoven, Gdansk, Groningen, the Hague, Helsinki, London (5x), Manchester, Minsk, Nairobi, Nanchang, Prague, San Mateo, San Francisco, Santa Clara (2x), Shanghai, Singapore (3x), Tel Aviv, Utrecht, Venice, Visakhapatnam, Zwolle and Zurich.

He is a Canadian (Dutch/Irish/English/Métis) whose writing career has ranged from the Canadian Native Press (Arctic) to the Caribbean & Europe. He’s written occasionally for Harvard Business Review, Wired, Venturebeat, The Guardian and Virgin.com, and his work and ideas have been translated into Dutch, Greek, Polish, German and French. A journalist by trade, an entrepreneur and adventurer at heart, Kastelein’s professional career has ranged from political publishing to TV technology, boatbuilding to judging startups, skippering yachts to marketing and more as he’s travelled for nearly 30 years as a Canadian expatriate living around the world. In his 20s, he sailed around the world on small yachts and wrote a series of travel articles called, ‘The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Seas’ travelling by hitching rides on yachts (1989) in major travel and yachting publications. He currently lives in Groningen, Netherlands where he’s raising three teenage daughters with his wife and sailing partner, Wieke Beenen.

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