Morning Brief 9.17.19: Facebook's David Marcus defends Libra

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"No new money"

Facebook's Libra has faced an almost constant stream of political pushback since the pending cryptocurrency was announced in June, the most recent arguments coming from a French government official who vowed to "stop Libra" because it was threatening monetary sovereignty.

David Marcus, who is head of Calibra, the Facebook subsidiary that is supporting Libra, issued a series of tweets designed to counter the notion that Facebook is threatening traditional currency and central government control over money. Marcus contends Libra is designed to run on top of existing currencies, and claims the 1:1 backing of traditional currencies requires an equivalent value in government reserve in order for Libra to exist. "As such, there's no new money creation," Marcus tweets.

The Bank of International Settlements questions Facebook executives on Monday, along with officials from Fnality, a stablecoin project; and executives from JPMorgan, which is creating JPM Coin.

Cryptophone

HTC has partnered with Bitcoin.com to outfit all new Exodus 1 phones with a Bitcoin Cash wallet already installed, a move to encourage more usage of its blockchain-powered handset, which debuted in 2018.

HTC will also push an update to add the wallet app for existing devices, reports Engadget. Bitcoin.com's online store is selling Exodus 1 devices as part of the collaboration.

The device manufacturer sees Bitcoin Cash as a gateway for other services that support consumer-driven data control, according to Engadget.

Youth pay

JPMorgan Chase and Wells Fargo have joined a $54 million investment in Greenlight Financial Technology, which has developed an app and debit card for kids.

Drive Capital led the investment, which Greenlight attracted in part because it has signed up about a half million parents and kids since its launch in 2017, reports Finextra.

Youth payment apps and cards are a tough market, where a lot of firms have struggled. But large banks continue to invest in initiatives, given the chance to capture young consumers and sell the concept of financial literacy.

Nationwide breach

Most of Ecuador's population, if not all, has been victimized by a data breach that included financial data, automobile registration, family tree information and government registry data, all information that can be used for ID theft and payment-related crimes — including exposure for cross-border transactions in other countries.

More than 20 million records were compromised, reports ZDNet, pointing out Ecuador's total population is only 16 million, meaning some records were either duplicates or tied to deceased people.

The breach was due to a misconfigured database, and is likely the largest in the nation's history, according to ZDNet.

From the Web

BitPay Launches Support for Ethereum
YAHOO FINANCE | Mon September 16, 2019
Businesses using BitPay for payment processing can accept Ethereum for purchases without the need for any integration or enhancements. Additionally, wallet users will be able to store and use Ethereum in a BitPay wallet and BitPay Prepaid Visa Card holders can top up debit cards.

Cyber security firms welcome to set up base in Singapore: Teo Chee Hean
THE STRAITS TIMES | Mon September 16, 2019
Global cyber security firms, large and small, that set up base in Singapore to grow their businesses and capabilities can tap the Republic's technical prowess, skilled manpower and networks, Senior Minister Teo Chee Hean said. Mr Teo added that these companies can use Singapore's global networks for cross-border collaboration, which is crucial for cyber security, given how it is an international field.

Cryptocurrency Dash to Begin Trading on Coinbase Pro
COINDESK | Mon September 16, 2019
Coinbase announced its review of eight cryptocurrencies earlier last month. Of those under study, dash is the first to be approved. A proof-of-work cryptocurrency, dash focuses on payments and security. With a reported marketcap of over $800 million, Dash is the 16th largest cryptocurrency by that metric.

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