WASHINGTON, D.C. – Bloomberg is reporting that Facebook is exploring the termination of Diem, its cryptocurrency project, through the sale of assets associated with the two-year old venture. Facebook, since renamed Meta, originally promoted it to make the payment system cheaper and faster. Bartlett Naylor, financial policy advocate for Public Citizen, released the following statement:
“Facebook’s reckless attempt to invade the payment system with its cryptocurrency would threaten innumerable harms: increasing its already manipulative surveillance of users, further abusing mainstream businesses, providing criminals and terrorists a mechanism to transfer funds while skirting law enforcement, and even compromising national monetary policy. The effort also assails the centuries’ old rules separating banking from commerce in the interest of consumer protection.
“Public Citizen has been meeting with financial regulators to highlight these and other problems, and it is gratifying to learn that the message may be understood. This project should not simply live under new ownership; it should be terminated altogether.”