In an interview with CNBC, Katie Haun, the former Bitcoin-related prosecutor turned crypto vocalist, said the United States faces a huge risk in national security if it bans and outlaws the development and use of Facebook’s cryptocurrency, Libra.
A Long Road to Cryptocurrencies
Katie first heard about Bitcoin (and cryptocurrencies) during an assignment as a prosecutor whereby she was asked by her boss at the U.S attorney’s office to look for ways to shut the cryptocurrency down. However, during her quest to shut down the cryptocurrency, she realized the cryptocurrency did not need probing but rather the use of the cryptocurrency.
“It would have been akin to saying ‘let’s go prosecute cash.’ ”
Haun’s mind gradually switched to the cryptocurrency field as she dwelled more and more on Bitcoin. As her ideas and thoughts changed, so did her career path. She switched from a prosecutor to become the first female general partner at Andreessen Horowitz in charge of its $350 million USD cryptocurrency management fund.
Libra Facing Regulatory Pressures
Andreessen Horowitz is a founding member of the Libra Association and Katie heads the crypto wing of the firm to complete its partnership requirements. However, in the past few weeks, governments and financial authorities across the world including India, Germany and France have strongly opposed the launch of the cryptocurrency claiming it may undermine the monetary policies.
The U.S Senate is no different when it comes to Libra as the Chair of Financial Services in the House, Rep. Maxine Waters, has been on Libra’s neck halting development of the platform till further notice. Speaking on the continued regulatory pressures on Libra, Haun explained the token is experiencing the same misperceptions associated with ‘shitcoins’. She explained,
“They [Regulators] were just heightened and they got more attention because of the high-profile nature of the project and the fact that Facebook was involved. I think it would be a really dangerous thing, and frankly a dangerous precedent to start shutting down technology before it’s built.”
A National Security Concern
Haun further explained that the ban of Libra would see the US fall behind its competitors, mostly China and Russia, who are building their own versions of Libra stable coin. If the United States falls behind in the development of a stable coin digital currency, there might be national security concerns given the development of other sovereign cryptocurrencies.
The people’s Bank of China announced they are in advanced development of their cryptocurrency that is expected to launch a lot sooner than the Libra token.