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Facebook unveils new digital currency, Libra

Facebook unveils new digital currency, Libra

Facebook is planning to launch its own cryptocurrency next year.

The new currency - titled Libra - will be purchasable through its platforms and will be stored in a digital wallet, called Calibra.

The company said the payment system will be integrated with other apps owned by Facebook, including WhatsApp, with third-party companies like Uber and Visa expected to accept the new currency.

David Marcus, head of Calibra, said in a statement, “Libra holds the potential to provide billions of people around the world with access to a more inclusive, more open financial ecosystem.”

“We know the journey is just beginning, but together we can achieve Libra’s mission to create a simple global currency and financial infrastructure that will empower billions of people.”

Facebook has received the go-ahead to launch in the US in 2020, but countries in the east have clamped down on cryptocurrency in the last year. 

Strong protection

The digital currency, targeted at the 1.7 billion adults worldwide without a bank account, is set to have strong protection of money and personal information, Facebook says. Security has become a huge focus for Facebook in light of recent data scandals.

Following the launch of Facebook Credits, Libra is the latest digital currency released by the platform, with a shelf life expectancy longer than its two-year predecessor.

Facebook has stressed that Libra will be managed independently in Geneva under a group of companies and charities called the Libra Association, with Facebook being a part of that team. Companies included in this association include Mastercard, PayPal, eBay, Spotify, Uber and Vodafone.

There is no confirmation yet on how Libra will be valued as a currency, including the value of Libra with conversions to territorial currencies.


Staff Writer

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