Senate to Hold Hearing on Facebook’s New Cryptocurrency

The Senate Banking Committee on Wednesday scheduled a hearing over Facebook’s plans to create a new cryptocurrency, The Hill reports.

Senator Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio) issued a statement in which he said: “We cannot allow Facebook to run a risky new cryptocurrency out of a Swiss bank account without oversight. I’m calling on our financial watchdogs to scrutinize this closely to ensure users are protected.’’

Brown and Senate Banking Committee Chairman Mike Crapo (R-Idaho) wrote a letter last month, in which they posed several questions to Facebook about the tech giant’s plans to protect its customers’ financial data.

“Privacy experts have raised questions about Facebook’s extensive data collection practices and whether any of the data collected by Facebook is being used for purposes that do, or should subject Facebook to the Fair Credit Reporting Act,’’ Brown and Crapo wrote.

Maxine Waters, the House Financial Service Committee Chairwoman, urged Facebook to stop the project until Congress can examine the situation. She issued a statement in which she said:

“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.’’

According to the Washington Post, Kevin Weil, Calibra’s vice president of product, said: “Your social data on Facebook is kept separate from Calibra data. This is not about improving ad targeting. We’re trying to draw a bright red line.’’

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