Facebook’s Libra could be misused, says treasury chief Mnuchin

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Facebook’s diagramed Libra cryptocurrency faced further opposition on Monday when the US moneys secretary warned about its potential criminal use.

Steven Mnuchin told a prod conference it could be used by “money launderers and terrorist financiers” and conjectured it was a national security issue.

He was “not comfortable” about Libra, joining President Donald Trump and the US middle bank in voicing concern.

Facebook executives will appear before a congressional board on Tuesday.

David Marcus, who will oversee Libra, is expected to depict the Senate Banking Committee that Facebook will not launch the currency until regulatory troubles are addressed.

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Mr Mnuchin said Libra would eat to convince financial regulators it has high privacy standards.

He declined to reference on any regulatory timeline for Libra, but said he was “not comfortable today” about digital currency and that Facebook was a “lengthy way away from” securing approval.

Cryptocurrencies generally “have been deeded to support billions of dollars of illicit activity like cyber felony, tax evasion, extortion, ransomware, illicit drugs and human human trafficking,” Mr Mnuchin said.

Loss to act

Last week, Mr Trump tweeted that he was “not a fan” of cryptocurrencies, and hinted that Facebook power need a banking licence.

Jerome Powell, head of the Federal Standoffishness, also said last week that Libra raises myriad serious concerns.

The tech giant, which hoped to launch Libra next year, has claimed it “anticipated critical feedback” and is keen to have “conversations” with formals and regulators.

In prepared testimony released on Monday ahead of Tuesday’s senate listen to, Mr Marcus said: “The Libra Association, which will manage the [Libra] put aside, has no intention of competing with any sovereign currencies or entering the monetary custom arena.

“Monetary policy is properly the province of central banks,” he ordered. “Facebook will not offer the Libra digital currency until we take fully addressed regulatory concerns and received appropriate approvals.”

Mr Marcus answered the US must lead innovation in digital currencies, adding: “If we fail to act, we could tout de suite see a digital currency controlled by others whose values are dramatically dissimilar.”

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