Facebook has confirmed that it has set up a team work out ways to leverage blockchain technology. The admission follows a report from Cheddar’s Alex Heath that claimed that the company wanted to use cryptocurrency for making payments on its platform. Facebook does have a marketplace that is accessible from the mobile app so there’s speculation that cryptocurrency could be used there but right now the purpose of the new team is being kept a secret.
After initial reports, a Facebook spokesperson confirmed the firm is looking into blockchain technology:
“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.”
The sources who spoke about Facebook pursuing its own cryptocurrency backed up an article published by Recode earlier in the week which claimed that David Marcus, formerly head of Messenger and president of PayPal before joining Facebook, was taking over a new internal team to explore blockchain technology.
If Facebook does pursue its own cryptocurrency it is believed that it will take years to materialise and sources close to the project have also confirmed that there are no plans in the works to offer an initial coin offering (ICO) either. One of the sources said that Facebook could make acquisitions in the field in order to develop its own cryptocurrency. Additionally, Facebook may also use blockchain tech to help it verify the identity of accounts.