Facebook expected to unveil cryptocurrency whitepaper

Helena Grech - 18th June 2019

It would be a huge leap into bypassing financial institutions and credit card agencies as the digital token could make it possible for users of Facebook, WhatsApp, Messenger and Instagram to make online purchases directly with retailers or to send funds between users.

Reports have emerged that Mark Zuckerberg's Facebook is expected to release a white paper detailing technical specifications on a new cryptocurrency today (Tuesday) which may be used to make payments across the social network.

The social media giant has been plagued by added scrutiny due to privacy concerns as well as a fear that its platform is being used by foreign governments to interfere in a nation's elections. Creating a framework which would allow users to bypass traditional intermediaries could allow the company to win back favour after a tumultuous two years.

It could be a huge leap into bypassing financial institutions and credit card agencies as the digital token would make it possible for users of Facebook, WhatsApp, Messenger and Instagram to make online purchases directly with retailers or to send funds between users.

The white paper would outline technical details, with reports suggesting that a full launch could come within a year.
After Facebook acquired the trademark 'Libra' las February, speculation was rife that this would be the name of its as-of-yet unreleased digital token.

The company has already been experimenting with payments through WhatsApp in India. A new cryptocurrency could allow users to circumvent online transaction fees, while also providing a cheaper way for merchants to receive payment.

Facebook has repeatedly declined to comment on this move, however media reports suggest that the cryptocurrency is being backed by endorsed by established companies such as Visa, MasterCard, Uber and PayPal.


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