Facebook reportedly hasn’t contacted the regulator it says will oversee Libra’s privacy and data security

A Swiss regulatory agency that Facebook executive David Marcus said in congressional testimony would be responsible for overseeing data and privacy protections for the company’s newly launched cryptocurrency, Libra, has not been contacted by Facebook, according to a report.

CNBC is reporting that the Swiss Federal Data Protection and Information Commissioner, who Marcus said would oversee data protections for its cryptocurrency in his testimony before the Senate Banking Committee, has yet to hear from the company which is depending on it for oversight.

In a statement provided to CNBC, Hugo Wyler, who’s the head of communication at the FDPIC said:

We have taken note of the statements made by David Marcus, Chief of Calibra, on our potential role as data protection supervisory authority in the Libra context. Until today we have not been contacted by the promoters of Libra… We expect Facebook or its promoters to provide us with concrete information when the time comes. Only then will we be able to examine the extent to which our legal advisory and supervisory competence is given. [...]  read more

What money should be

Nik Milanovic is a fintech and financial inclusion enthusiast, with a decade of work across mobile payments, online lending, credit and microfinance.

More posts by this contributor

With the release of the Facebook consortium’s project Libra whitepaper, the internet, tech world, financial services industry and policy circles are all burning with conversation on the project’s potential. We are still very early into Libra’s life — it is, after all, still a proposal — and there is an endless set of questions left to answer. The project could redefine how we view money or it could be a complete failure; we won’t know which for years to come.

While there isn’t much to add to the (likely thousands) of pundit takes on the project until more details come out, this moment does provide us with an opportunity to step back and take a look at money itself. We should be asking ourselves: how does money work today and how should it work?

Money is an anachronistically analog part of everyday life. The last 25 [...]  read more

Daily Crunch: A closer look Facebook and Libra

The Daily Crunch is TechCrunch’s roundup of our biggest and most important stories. If you’d like to get this delivered to your inbox every day at around 9am Pacific, you can subscribe here.

1. Libra currently looks more like a fiat currency than a cryptocurrency

Facebook unveiled a cryptocurrency called Libra yesterday. Romain Dillet looks at the company’s announcement and concludes that the current governance model and blockchain implementation seems closer to banks than bitcoin.

In other words, it looks like a blockchain but it’s not a real blockchain. It’s not truly decentralized.

2. Apple expands authorized repairs to ~1,000 Best Buy stores

In the past three years, Apple says it has expanded repair coverage to three times as many U.S. locations, thanks to third-party partnerships. Those locations now include almost 1,000 Best Buys.

3. Google announces $1B, 10-year plan to add thousands of homes to Bay Area

The housing crisis in the Bay Area, particularly in San Francisco, is [...]  read more

House chairwoman wants Facebook to pause work on its cryptocurrency

The congresswoman also said that Facebook executives should testify about Libra as part of that oversight.

We’ve asked Facebook for comment. As part of the announcement, though, it launched a Libra Association whose aim is to oversee the currency outside of Facebook’s control. Calibra, the digital wallet for the new monetary format, is supposed to share only limited data with Facebook and have “strong protections” such as automated fraud checks.

Those measures might not satisfy politicians. Numerous federal and state regulators are investigating Facebook’s behavior in recent years, and there’s no question that the internet giant has been awash in privacy [...]  read more

Binance begins to restrict US users ahead of regulatory-compliant exchange launch

The world’s largest crypto exchange is going legit. Binance, which processes over $1 billion on a daily basis and for so long has embodied crypto’s wild west culture, announced that it will launch a U.S-based service — but, in the meantime, it is implementing restrictions for U.S. passport holders worldwide and those based in the country.

The company has grown to become one of the biggest names in crypto by allowing anyone to use its service to trade a myriad of tokens, many of which are unavailable or limited on other exchanges. But over the past year, Binance has matured and begin to offer more formalized services. Following fiat currency exchange launches in the UK, Uganda and Singapore, so Binance is opening a dedicated U.S. exchange to avoid uncertainty around its legality.

This week, Binance announced it is pairing up with BAM Trading Services — which Coindesk [...]  read more

Telegram’s crypto tokens are (kind of) going on sale to the public for the first time

Telegram, the most hyped ICO in the history of ICOs, is finally making its tokens available to retail investors through a limited listing that will precede a full sale later this year — but there are a lot of catches.

The messaging company, which serves as the de facto chat app for the crypto community, raised a record-high $1.7 billion last year through a token sale that was limited to accredited investors. The listing saw unprecedented demand despite a project which, some industry critics argued, recycled old ideas and proposed unmeetable goals.

Now its Gram token will go on sale to regular crypto buyers for the first time next month through a listing on crypto exchange Liquid on July 10. The arrangement is a limited offering before a full public sale in October, but the U.S, China and Japan are among countries where it will not be sold.

It’s notable that Liquid, which recently claimed to have raised [...]  read more

The FBI wants help from victims of QuadrigaCX’s cryptocurrency collapse

Remember that wild cryptocurrency story from earlier this year? The one where a Canadian exchange shut down shortly after co-founder and CEO Gerald Cotten died, claiming he was the only one who could access its wallets. Wallets that should’ve stored assets for 76,000 customers with a value of around $200 million (CAD). If any of that was your digital money then yeah, you probably do remember.

Investigations into the company, QuadrigaCX, have suggested it did not have the money to satisfy its deposits, and naturally, law enforcement is sniffing around. Its customers were located around the world, and the FBI is circulating a form for customers to get in touch with it, the IRS, the Washington D.C. AG’s office and the DoJ’s Computer Crime and Intellectual Property Section.

social experiment by Livio Acerbo #greengroundit #engadget https://www.engadget.com/2019/06/05/quadrigacx-bitcoin-fbi-ir/

SEC expands its war on cryptocurrency companies with a lawsuit against Kik

The Securities and Exchange Commission has sued Kik Interactive for the $100 million token sale the company announced two years ago.

It’s an expansion of legal actions that began last year as the SEC seeks to rein in companies that the regulatory agency thinks issued securities illegally.

In the lawsuit, the SEC claims that Kik conducted an illegal $100 million offering of digital tokens by selling the tokens to U.S. investors without registering their offer and sale as required under U.S. law.

The complaint alleges that Kik had been losing money for years on its online messaging application and that the company’s management predicted it would run out of money in 2017, precisely when it began laying the groundwork for the launch of its digital token, “Kin.”

The creation of an online marketplace selling through the company’s messaging service was financed by the sale of 1 trillion digital tokens to raise $100 million dollars.

Critical to the SEC’s case is the allegation that Kik [...]  read more

How to see another company’s growth tactics and try them yourself

Julian Shapiro is the founder of BellCurve.com, a growth marketing agency that trains you to become a marketing professional. He also writes at Julian.com. More posts by this contributor

Every company’s online acquisition strategy is out in the open. If you know where to look.

This post shows you exactly where to look, and how to reverse engineer their growth tactics.

Why is this important? Competitive analysis de-risks your own growth experiments: You find the best growth ideas to adopt and the worst ones to avoid.

First, a warning: Your goal is not to repurpose another company’s hard work. That makes you a thief. Your goal is to identify other companies who face the same growth challenges as you, then to study their approaches for solutions to draw from.

As I walk through uncovering a competitor’s tactics, keep in mind which competitors are worth looking at: For instance, you should rarely over-analyze early-stage companies. They’re unlikely to be methodical at growth.

Meaning, if you blindly copy their site and their ads, it’s possible you’ll be copying tactics that are not actually responsible for their growth. Their success may instead be [...]  read more

Crypto exchange Binance prepares to add margin trading ‘soon’

Binance, the world’s most prominent crypto exchange, says it is close to adding a much-anticipated margin trading feature to its service following weeks of speculation.

The company tweeted confirmation of the upcoming feature in a screenshot which subtly teases the imminent arrival of margin trading options. Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao (pictured above) first revealed that the feature was headed to Binance during a live stream following a hack earlier this month that saw Binance lose around $40 million in Bitcoin.

TechCrunch understands that margin trading has been beta tested among selected users. A Binance representative declined to comment on the specifics, but did confirm that margin trading will be available on Binance.com “soon.”

Margin trading, which lets traders use their balance as collateral to super-size their buying power, is seen by many as an important growth vector for crypto trading. Binance is often the world’s largest exchange based on daily trading volumes — though [...]  read more