Facebook to postpone digital currency until regulators happy
Facebook says it is willing to postpone its digital currency until it has satisfied the concerns of the US treasury and other regulators around the world.
David Marcus, head of Facebook's Libra unit, was grilled by US senators on Tuesday who expressed concern about the planned cryptocurrency, which will be run by a number of firms including Mastercard, Visa and PayPal.
Facebook will incorporate the currency into its digital wallet called Calibra, while other companies will be able to use Libra in their own apps.
Facing the Senate banking, housing and urban affairs committee, Mr Marcus said that Facebook understood "loud and clear" that people did not want their financial details connected to social media data.
Several of the legislators raised questions about whether the social media giant could be trusted in the financial sector, given the data privacy issues it had been embroiled in in the past, such as the Cambridge Analytica scandal.
"To earn people's trust, we will have to have the highest standards when it comes to privacy, and the way we've built Calibra is that no financial data or account data that is collected in Calibra to offer the service will actually be shared with Facebook," he told the committee.
"The way we've built this is to separate social and financial data because we've heard loud and clear that they don't want those two types of data streams connected, so this is the way the system is designed.
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"Facebook will only have one vote and will not be in a position to control the association, nor will Facebook or the Libra Association position themselves to compete with sovereign currencies or interfere with monetary policy.
"The Calibra wallet will not share individual customer data with the Libra Association or with Facebook, except for limited circumstances such as preventing fraud or criminal activity in complying with the law."