Cryptocurrency News

India Likely Launch Destination for Facebook’s Secret Crypto Project

Facebook’s Cryptocurrency project dubbed Project Libra has been making Cryptocurrency headlines for the last few months. According to a majority of information, the most visible detail is Facebook’s Cryptocurrency being a stablecoin.

A stablecoin is defined as a cryptocurrency which minimizes the high volatility of cryptocurrencies by being pegged to a fiat currency or an exchange-traded commodity like gold.

The latest details emerging from Facebook insiders have highlighted that India could be the region where the new Cryptocurrency will first be tested.

India currently is facing a confusing Cryptocurrency ban which according to Ajeet Khurana of Zebpay is not really the case. However let’s not forget that India’s growing population, along with high remittances makes it the ideal country to kickstart the Cryptocurrency for testing.

Why India?

India being the second most populous country in the world after China has 1.366 Billion currently living in the country. The median age is 27 years old showcasing that social media such as Facebook and Whatsapp is highly used in the Asian country. The stablecoin could be used to transfer money through the push of a button through WhatsApp, which will be beneficial to the many Indians living abroad sending funds back to their families back home.

India was noted for being the top recipience of remittances with USD 79 billion recorded being sent back home in 2018 according to the World Bank.

Potential of Facebook’s Stable Coin

In India, alone Facebook’s stable coin could create mass adoption of Cryptocurrency. Anthony Pompliano who is actively engaged on Crypto twitter pointed out in December 2018 about India being a big market for Facebook’s stablecoin.

Reversal of Facebook’s Crypto Advertisement Policy

The social media giant has reversed the advertisement policy of a written approval involving Blockchain and Cryptocurrency products and services. However, it still restricts initial coin offerings (ICOs) due to the big scams in the industry. While Cryptocurrency exchanges and mining products and services need to be reviewed beforehand.

These reversals come in at a time when Facebook’s stablecoin project is trending due to financial players such as Visa and Mastercard planning to fund the project.

What makes Facebook’s stable coin even more impressive is the fact that most of the team consists of ex Paypal employees such as the former president of Paypal David Marcus.

Could Paypal’s last few months as the leading Payment processing company come to an end? Let’s wait and see!

Zilliqa Denies Facebook Rumors

The cryptocurrency community has been quite enthusiastic about a particular piece of news, as it appears as though Facebook might be developing its own cryptocurrency. This is quite the catalyst, as Facebook does boast over 2 billion monthly active users, meaning that this is much more than simply a social media platform utilizing cryptocurrency – it gives the opportunity for a significant portion of the world to participate in a blockchain ecosystem.

The news comes off the heels of the fact that Facebook has been aggressively hiring blockchain engineers, so it didn’t come as a complete surprise. The description for the job listings were quite cryptic: “The blockchain team is a startup within Facebook, with a vision to make blockchain technology work at Facebook scale. We’re exploring areas of interest across all facets of blockchain technology. Our ultimate goal is to help billions of people with access to things they don’t have now – that could be things like equitable financial services, new ways to save, or new ways to share information.”

Rumors Floating Around

Specifically, Facebook apparently is developing a stablecoin for Whatsapp, which it purchased for $22 billion in 2014, in arguably its most high-profile acquisition ever. The project is meant to disrupt the remittance industry, which is already worth hundreds of billions of dollars.

A Zilliqa enthusiast on Twitter by the name of Oliver Bell has pointed out that Zilliqa might actually be involved with the Facebook cryptocurrency. In a tweet that has circulated around the cryptocurrency community, he stated that there might be an extensive level of collaboration regarding Zilliqa and Facebook:

Zilliqa Denies Rumors

Zilliqa did recently, and many believe that it’s because of the Facebook rumors. However, unfortunately for Zilliqa investors – there has been a development. The official Zilliqa Twitter account has denied the rumors completely. The account tweeted that not only were the rumors false, but advocated for supporters to stop sharing the rumor, as well. Many praised Zilliqa for its transparency regarding the response, as well. Zilliqa is a blockchain platform that is known for its scalability, and is currently the 32nd largest cryptocurrency project in the world, with a market capitalization over $200 million (as of press time).

Specifically, Zilliqa tweeted: “We have been made aware of a rumour that has been circulating on a potential collaboration with Facebook. This is a baseless rumour and we would like to ask everyone to refrain from sharing fake information on social media.” The tweet garnered over 150 retweets and over 400 likes. You can find the tweet below:

Title image courtesy of BeatingBetting.co.uk

Facebook Blockchain Ramps Up Hiring “to help billions of people” As Privacy Struggles Intensify

Earlier this year, Facebook announced a new blockchain team, led by former PayPal president David Marcus. A recent review by The Block revealed that the company has recently started hiring more personnel for the Facebook Blockchain startup whose “ultimate goal is to help billions of people with things they don’t have access to now.”

In the midst of a blockchain hiring spree, a new lawsuit by Washington, D.C., as well as a fresh report from The New York Times struck Facebook at its weakest point – privacy. According to the report, the social media giant has been giving select corporations access to significantly more personal information than disclosed.

A Blockchain product in late-stage development?

Three of the job listings found on the company’s recruitment website stood out — a Head of Brand, a Global Brand Development Lead as well as a Product Marketing Lead — all of which with product go-to-market duties.
According to the report, the job listings of those roles provide the most compelling novel insights into the state of Facebook’s Blockchain group and its future product plans. According to the role responsibilities of the Product Marketing Lead:

“This person will be responsible for creating our product strategy for developers and consumers, managing our product go-to-market plans and coordinating a cross-functional team to bring great solutions to connect the community.”

Typically, those positions’ responsibilities are to prepare and pitch a product to consumers, businesses, and developers. Companies, such as Facebook, tend to ramp up product and brand marketing personnel once the given project approaches its end-stage technical development and is nearing a rollout.

Interestingly, when inquired about the Head of Brand and the Global Brand Development Lead positions by The Block, Facebook Blockchain reportedly removed those two postings, while all others remain.

A Small Team with One Goal: Change the World via Blockchain

As outlined in its Data Scientist job description, “At Facebook, we have established a new team building blockchain technologies. It’s a small, but talented group of people, who are passionate about changing the world…”

The number of Facebook Blockchain employees that can be found on Linkedin has nearly tripled in the past months. With a quick search for the company’s employees with the term “Blockchain,” you will be able to find leads across nearly every function – Product, Engineering, Security, Design, Legal, Public Policy, Business Development, Marketing, Communications, and Recruiting, among others. There are also numerous individual contributors.

Facebook’s Privacy Rollercoaster

Just a day ago, Washington, D.C., filed a lawsuit against Facebook because of the Cambridge Analytica dispute. Earlier this year, the news about this data breach broke out, marking the beginning of a series of exposed privacy concerns, breaches, and violations. From retaining deleted videos on the social network, through the remote removal of company executive’s messages from people’s inboxes, all the way to giving Netflix and Spotify access to its users’ private messages.

According to The NYT report — summarizing a review of more than 270 leaked internal company documents and over 60 interviews with former company employees, partners, former government officials, and privacy advocates — Facebook has been giving select few big corporations access to personal information without its users’ consent, essentially sparing them from its privacy policies.

As stated in the report, besides empowering Spotify and Netflix with your private messages, the company also shared all of the names of Facebook users’ friends to Microsoft Bing, gave Amazon access to their names and contact information through their friends, and it allowed Yahoo to spectate users’ friends’ posts.

To top all off, the report states that some of these deals have been ongoing as recently as this summer, despite public statements that claim such activities had been discontinued years ago.

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Facebook Eases Crypto Advertising Ban….for some companies

Facebook has announced that it is easing its recent ban imposed against cryptocurrency. They will allow pre-vetted crypto companies to advertise on their social network. The news has seemingly fueled rumors that the tech giant is considering buying Coinbase, although at the time they introduced the full ban, they did add the caveat that they would conduct further investigation to determine how best to proceed with crypto advertisements.

Facebook has had a torrid year, having fallen foul of data laws. Founder Mark Zuckerberg has been forced to appear at a congressional hearing to defend the company’s collection and use of personal data, following the controversy surrounding Cambridge Analytica’s use of personal information.

The crypto ban was first launched on January 30, when product management director Rob Leathern announced that ads that “promote financial products and services that are frequently associated with misleading or deceptive promotional practices, such as binary options, initial coin offerings and cryptocurrency.”

This week’s announcement isn’t exactly a full u-turn. At the time of the announcement, Facebook said that they would monitor the situation in the future. The social media giant has said that ICOs and binaries will still be prohibited. However, other crypto companies can now submit an application and, on acceptance, will be allowed to publish ads on the site.

Considering the announcement of the advertising ban saw Bitcoin prices slump, there had been hopes that the reversal would see prices rise again, but there has been no indication of that yet. However, it has further ignited rumors of the company’s intention to buy Coinbase. Following a major management reshuffle last month, they announced a blockchain exploratory team that would be looking into its potential use. The head of the team is David Marcus, who is not only the former head of Messenger but also sits on the board of Coinbase. With Facebook’s 2 billion users, if it introduced its own crypto or acquired another, it could potentially be used by more than any other single currency.

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