YOU CAN'T SWING A DIGITAL CAT without hitting a tech firm taking a gander at cryptocurrencies, and Facebook is reportedly the latest company to do so.
The social network, according to Cheddar, plans to launch its own cryptocurrency with the goal to facilitates payments through its social platform.
People familiar with Facebook's plans said the social network giant is "very serious" about creating its own take on digital money such as Bitcoin and Monero.
Having its own cryptocurrency supported by a blockchain network could shake up Facebook's own Marketplace service found on its main social site. Such a currency, let's call it 'Facecoin', could make it a lot easier and safer for people to buy and sell things through Facebook's Marketplace.
Facebook is also reportedly working on ways to use token-based digital currency in other areas of its social network, as well looking at how blockchain tech could be slotted elsewhere into the platform.
Blockchain tech is most often linked to cryptocurrencies, but it can be used to store data in a distributed yet secure fashion, which is something Facebook is likely to be curious about given the alleged misuse of data in the Cambridge Analytica scandal.
But so far Facebook is keeping pretty tight-lipped on what it plans to do with blockchain-based tech and hasn't confirmed that it's working on its own cryptocurrency.
"Like many other companies, Facebook is exploring ways to leverage the power of blockchain technology. This new small team will be exploring many different applications. We don't have anything further to share," a Facebook spokesperson told The Verge.
There may be no confirmation that Facecoin is in the works, but the whole thing helps distract attention from the social network and the questionable ways it collects and uses user data; not that backlashes to Facebook's part in the Cambridge Analytica scandal appeared to have had a huge effect on Facebook. µ
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