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Facebook Actively Working on Launching WhatsApp Pay Soon

Facebook said it won’t store sensitive data in countries where it might be improperly accessed because of the weak rule of law or governments that can forcibly get access to users’ data

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This photograph taken on May 16, 2018, shows a figurine standing in front of the logo of social network Facebook on a cracked screen of a smartphone in Paris. VOA

Facebook is upbeat on the growth of digital payments in India and is actively working on launching WhatsApp Pay soon, CEO Mark Zuckerberg has said.

In an earnings call with analysts late Wednesday, Zuckerberg said the company is building out Payments for the global market.

“We have a test that is running in India for WhatsApp now, we’re hoping to launch in several other countries at some point, but I don’t want to put a timeframe on that here, but it’s something that we’re actively working on,” he said.

WhatsApp Pay, stuck owing to India’s demand to store data locally, has not gone beyond the beta testing it did with nearly one million users last year.

“In Instagram and Facebook, you have shopping, and you have Marketplace and you have all the tens of millions of small businesses that use pages and a lot that use Instagram for sharing their inventory and being able to help people discover and pay.

“When you’re using a messaging service, that everything there is very intimate and private so it feels like a more natural space to be interacting with a business in a private way for doing transactions,” Zuckerberg added.

Facebook daily active users reached 1.56 billion, up 8 per cent compared to last year, led by growth in India, Indonesia and the Philippines.

This represents approximately 66 per cent of the 2.38 billion monthly active users in March.

According to Zuckerberg, privacy is the biggest area for the future of social networking.

“Today, people increasingly want the intimacy of connecting privately as well. So, I think there also needs to be a digital equivalent of the living room — a platform just as built out with all of the ways you’d want to interact privately,” said the Facebook CEO.

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Facebook’s CEO Mark Zuckerberg. VOA

He said the digital town squares like Facebook and Instagram will always be important and will only continue to grow in importance.

“Over time, I believe there’s an even bigger opportunity with the digital living room to build a platform focused on privacy. We all need to communicate privately, and this service could be even more important in our lives. So, I think we should focus our efforts on building this privacy-focused platform,” he noted.

The privacy-focused platform will be built around private interactions.

“You should have simple, intimate spaces where you have complete confidence that what you say and do is private. Encryption. Your private communications should be secure, and end-to-end encryption prevents anyone – including even us – from seeing what you share,” Zuckerberg added.

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“You shouldn’t have to worry about what you share coming back to hurt you later, so we won’t keep around messages or Stories for longer than necessary,” he noted.

Facebook said it won’t store sensitive data in countries where it might be improperly accessed because of the weak rule of law or governments that can forcibly get access to users’ data. (IANS)

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Facebook Building its Cryptocurrency in Switzerland: Report

Facebook has over 2.38 billion users globally and launching cryptocurrency will allow them make payments using a virtual currency like Bitcoin

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FILE - A 3D printed Facebook logo is seen in front of a displayed Russian flag in this photo illustration, Aug. 3, 2018. VOA

Giving its cryptocurrency dream a firm beginning, Facebook has reportedly set up a company called Libra Networks in Switzerland that is developing payments and Blockchain systems for the social networking giant.

According to a report in CNET quoting Swiss publication Handelszeitung, the Facebook cyrptocurrency would be tied to the US dollar and could, therefore, remain stable unlike Bitcoin which has crashed.

“Facebook set up Libra Networks in Geneva several weeks ago. Libra is the social network’s internal project name for the digital currency,” the report said late on Saturday.

The Swiss company would focus on developing the software and hardware for currency-related functions like payments, Blockchain, analytics, big data and identity management.

Facebook declined to comment on the new report.

According to a report in The Wall Street Journal earlier this month, the social media giant is “recruiting dozens of financial firms and online merchants” towards its cryptocurrency-based system that would use a digital coin similar to Bitcoin.

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Bitcoin.com buttons are seen displayed on the floor of the Consensus 2018 blockchain technology conference in New York City, New York. VOA

The New York Times reported in February that Facebook had a team of 50 people working on its virtual currency project.

“Like many other companies, Facebook is exploring ways to leverage the power of Blockchain technology,” Facebook had insisted.

In a public interview with Harvard Law professor Jonathan Zittrain in February, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg said he is “potentially interested” in putting the Facebook login on the Blockchain technology.

Also Read- Chinese Shout ‘Boycott Apple’ as US Goes After Huawei

“I’m thinking about going back to decentralised or Blockchain authentication. Although I haven’t figured out a way to make this work out but this is around authentication and basically granting access to your information and to different services,” Zuckerberg told Zittrain.

According to Zuckerberg, Blockchain could give users more powers when granting data access to third-party apps.

Facebook has over 2.38 billion users globally and launching cryptocurrency will allow them make payments using a virtual currency like Bitcoin. (IANS)