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Facebook seeks to best leverage blockchain, sets up research group

Social networking giant Facebook is launching a blockchain division in the midst of a major overhaul, according to Reuters.

In an online post, David Marcus, the head of Messenger, said that he is leaving his current role to set up a group in order to explore blockchain technology.

“I'm setting up a small group to explore how to best leverage Blockchain across Facebook, starting from scratch,” Marcus wrote.

Marcus will be joined by Kevin Weil, head of product at Instagram, who is leaving his current role to join the blockchain division.

Earlier this year, Facebook Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg had expressed his interest to study the positive and negative aspects of encryption and cryptocurrency. He said that these technologies “take power from centralized systems and put it back into people's hands,” adding that he wanted to study these techs to understand “how best to use them in our services.”

The announcement follows the recent controversy that over 50 million Facebook user profiles were leaked to Cambridge Analytica, a UK-based political data analytics provider.

Management shakeup

Facebook on Tuesday announced Jeff Zients, the CEO of Cranemere, will be joining the company’s board of directors and audit committee, effective May 31, 2018.

Other shakeups include more responsibility for chief product officer Chris Cox, who will now also oversee Instagram, Messenger and WhatsApp. CTO Mike Schroepfer and Vice President of Growth Javier Olivan, will oversee other consolidated divisions.

Stan Chudnovsky, Messenger’s product chief, will take on as the head of the service. In addition, Chris Daniels, who has been leading a Facebook effort to expand internet access, will be the new head of WhatsApp.

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July 2 15:00 UTC Released

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