Facebook said its Libra cryptocurrency will be regulated by Swiss authorities — but that was news to those Swiss authorities

Chip Somodevilla/Getty ImagesFacebook co-founder, Chairman and CEO Mark Zuckerberg
  • David Marcus, head of Facebook’s cryptocurrency efforts, testified at a Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs hearing about Libra, the social network’s new cryptocurrency push.
  • Marcus stated that the Libra Association, which will oversee Libra and be headquartered in Switzerland, will be regulated by the Swiss Federal Data Protection and Information Commissioner (FDPIC).
  • But the FDPIC says – and Facebook confirms – that it hasn’t been in touch.
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At a US Senate committee hearing on Tuesday, Facebook said that Swiss authorities will regulate the Libra Association – a consortium of companies including Uber, Mastercard, and Facebook itself, which will itself oversee the new Libra cryptocurrency.

The issue, it seems, is that this was news to those Swiss authorities.

David Marcus, head of Facebook’s cryptocurrency-focused Calibra subsidiary, testified in front of the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs hearing on Tuesday. The hearing was called to examine Facebook’s Libra cryptocurrency ambitions and address related data privacy concerns.

Marcus stated in his prepared remarks that the Libra Association, which will be headquartered in Switzerland, will be regulated by the Swiss Federal Data Protection and Information Commissioner (FDPIC). The association will amass 100 members before Libra launches, Marcus said.

“For the purposes of data and privacy protections, the Swiss Federal Data Protection and Information Commissioner (FDPIC) will be the Libra Association’s privacy regulator,” said Marcus’ testimony.

However, the FDPIC reportedly says that neither Facebook nor anybody else from the Libra Association ever actually got in touch.

“Until today we have not been contacted by the promoters of Libra,” Hugo Wyler, the FDPIC head of communication, said in a statement to CNBC on Tuesday. “We expect Facebook or its promoters to provide us with concrete information when the time comes. Only then will we be able to examine the extent to which our legal advisory and supervisory competence is given. In any case, we are following the development of the project in the public debate.”

“We’ve yet to meet with the FDPIC but look forward to meeting with them soon as part of our ongoing conversations with regulators and policymakers,” a Calibra spokesperson told Business Insider.

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