The founder of Facebook crypto-project Libra, Mark Zuckerberg, is set to appear before the U.S. regulator, the Securities and Exchanges Commission (SEC) by January 2020.
This announcement comes shortly after Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg agreed to testify before the U.S. House Committee on October 29. However, the meeting will not take place until the CEO Mark Zuckerberg appears before the panel by January 2020. This revelation comes even if the Libra project continues to battle it out with regulators from various regions of the world, about the possibility of launching a cryptocurrency.
Since it announced its intention to launch a cryptocurrency, Facebook has met heavy opposition from various governments, which are concerned about the impact the proposed digital coin might have on the state-owned currencies. Some countries such as France and Germany have already imposed a ban on the project. Financial watchdogs from across the world are equally concerned about the possible impact that the Facebook-allied stablecoin would have on the global financial system.
Libra and Data Privacy
During a hearing in July this year (2019), the Chairwoman of the House Financial Services Committee Maxine Waters said:
“Facebook’s plans raise serious privacy, trading, national security, and monetary policy concerns, not only for Facebook’s over 2 billion users, who will have immediate access to these products but also for consumers, investors and the global economy.”
Based on her sentiments, the Chairwoman Facebook to suspend the launch of Libra until the SEC and the Congress complete their deliberations on the legal structure around the coin. Agreeing with Waters’ decision, Calibra Head David Marcus said:
“Facebook will not offer the Libra digital currency until we have fully addressed regulatory concerns and received appropriate approvals.”
Based on Facebook’s popularity across the world, Libra already commands a 2.8 million-strong user base. To prevent users from engaging in illicit activities, Libra requires all its users to register with a recognized document such as a government-issued ID. This would help control the criminal activities used by cybercriminals.