Tech giants are exploring blockchain and Facebook will not be left behind. The company has reportedly promoted one of its senior engineers, Evan Cheng, as the Director of Engineering for its new blockchain division.
Powering up the blockchain division
Last May, Facebook Messenger head David Marcus, had announced leaving the post to help the company explore the uses of blockchain technology.
“I’m setting up a small group to explore how to best leverage Blockchain across Facebook, starting from scratch,” Marcus announced via a post in his Facebook page. This came months following the announcement of Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg that he has started exploring the possible uses of cryptocurrencies for Facebook. Blockchain happens to be the underpinning technology behind cryptocurrencies brought to fame by Bitcoin.
Joining Marcus now is another Facebook senior engineer.
Getting serious about blockchain
Now that one of its senior engineers has transferred to the blockchain division, the social networking giant appears more serious than ever. Evan Cheng’s LinkedIn profile supports his transfer as he became the Director of Engineering for Blockchain recently. Previously, Cheng was known as head of the Programming Languages & Runtimes for Facebook. He had held the post for three years.
Before that, Cheng was with Apple and worked as a Senior Manager for Low Level Tools. He also has experience on back engineering and compilation technology. Cheng’s track record showed him tweeting about blockchain. In addition, he previously served as divisor to several blockchain startups/projects like ChainLink and Zilliqa.
“It means it’s [Cheng’s promotion] not just an exploratory project,” TechCrunch quoted a source who monitors the blockchain space. According to the same source, putting Cheng in the blockchain division means the project is important because he knows a thing or two about scalability and performance.
As of the first quarter of 2018, Facebook has over 2 billion monthly active users all across the world, which makes it a likely target of security threats for the vast amount of valuable information it currently holds. In recent news, the company has been involved in different data breach scandals in which data from 87 million Facebook users were gathered and used in political campaigns. Despite this, the number of monthly users still increased by 13 percent compared with 2017’s first quarter. Seeing the significant impact of social media in today’s society, it is high time that Facebook and similar social networking sites find ways to protect their users from unscrupulous manipulation.
Facebook’s move to explore blockchain may be one of the steps to address these problems. With blockchain’s decentralized and immutable design, it bodes well for streamlining processes as well as strengthening security for data handling across many industries.