Financial regulators in Australia are looking to put more pressure on Libra.
Libra Is Getting Reamed… Again
A new report suggests that Facebook and Libra executives failed to follow proper Australian protocols. This is raising concerns with members of the Australian government, who are now looking to learn all they can before the currency is set to debut in 2020.
Facebook’s Libra has had a rocky history. The coin was first introduced back in June of 2019 to rather lackluster reception. The company claimed it was in the process of building the global cryptocurrency as a means of helping people in developing nations buy goods and services through Facebook.
Many users scowled at this idea. Following the Cambridge Analytica fiasco in 2018 and several other scandals, many didn’t fancy the idea of Facebook potentially monitoring their financial habits or gaining access to their monetary data. After all, it’s not like Facebook had been responsible with separate financial data in the past.
A new survey suggested that less than three percent of Facebook users would even consider using Libra should it ever reach fruition. Executives like Mark Zuckerberg and David Marcus – the head of Facebook’s blockchain division – have spent the last several months trying to convince the public and members of the American Congress that their intentions are noble, and that they are working hard to prevent money laundering and keep customer data safe.
But for many, these notions just aren’t flying. The Australian regulators in question cite a very “poor” meeting that occurred between them and representatives of Libra back in October. They now want to use the full extent of their powers to get the entire story on Libra – something not even the U.S. has been privy to.
Elizabeth Hampton – deputy commissioner of the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner (OAIC) – explained in a statement:
If we don’t get answers to questions from the U.S.-based team, we will then need to consider whether formal powers are exercised where available.
The Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) issued its own report regarding the dangers to not only the public, but the international financial system if Libra is not properly regulated and kept in check. The document reads:
The proposed Libra ecosystem poses many risks and threats including the proliferation of scams based on Libra via mobile apps. We also expect that we may identify more risks and threats once we have more information.
We’re Doing What We Can
Facebook explained that it will continue to work with outside governments to ensure it remains compliant with every region’s distinct laws. A statement reads:
As a member of the Libra Association, we will continue to be a part of dialogue to ensure that this global financial infrastructure is governed in a way that is reflective of the people it serves.