The proposed Libra Coin cryptocurrency by Facebook has, so far, received a mixed bag of responses. The latest round of skepticism towards Libra Coin is coming fresh from the Indian government.
On Saturday, Economic Affairs Secretary, Subhash Garg, went on record in New Delhi to state “Design of the Facebook currency has not been fully explained…But whatever it is, it would be a private cryptocurrency and that’s not something we have been comfortable with.”
This comes after a draft bill to regulate cryptocurrencies was released by the Indian government. Within the draft, the stance of India’s government is clear: they are strongly against them.
Their proposed bill speculates sentences of up to 10 years imprisonment for anyone in the Asian subcontinent who holds, buys or sells cryptocurrencies.
This news will come as a hit to the Facebook company. In the four years since 2015 India’s Facebook population has doubled to over 300 million and many experts expect it to surpass 400 million by 2023.
Track The Unbanked
On the other hand, in order to use their proposed Calibra wallet, you need to pass a of KYC check. A KYC (Know Your Customer) check requires you to send a government issued ID to prove who you are.
Taking the above into account it would seem that Facebook’s goal is going to be hard to achieve. A large reason many people in underdeveloped countries do not have a bank is their lack of official ID.
Thus, banking the unbanked is most likely a guise to cover the an ulterior purpose of the Libra Coin: to track you.
As mentioned, Facebook’s track record with handling privacy is not great. The company have been proven to sell people’s data to advertisers. And said advertisers use this data to manipulate democratic processes.
Unsurprisingly, with nothing more than people’s mundane statuses Cambridge Analytica were able to influence two democratic processes. That we know of. Imagine what they could do with all of your spending data as well.
Love, peace and happiness.