Blockchain proposals presented to US Congress with consumer tech bill

Two new proposals have been put forward by U.S. lawmakers which seek to add blockchain issues to new consumer protection legislation, according to reports.

The House Committee on Energy and Commerce recently supported a motion that would incorporate elements of the Digital Taxonomy Act and the Blockchain Innovation Act into new legislation as part of the upcoming Consumer Safety Technology Act.

The move gives blockchain technology legal parity in the act alongside artificial intelligence, and creates obligations for the Federal Trade Commission and the Department of Commerce to examine and reduce future possible consumer risks.

In particular, the law will look to identify and tackle “deceptive practices” in digital currency, including the sale of misleading or valueless digital tokens.

There would also be an examination of how blockchain technology could assist governments in fighting against fraud more generally, and how the technology can be used to uncover deceptive practices in other industries.

Representative Darren Soto (D-Fla.) said the bill would lead to a new Blockchain Center for Excellence within the Department of Commerce.

“I believe our government needs to support that growth, establish light-touch regulations to ensure certainty, protect innovation, stop fraud and enable its appropriate use for government, business and consumers.”

At its current stage of progress, the bill is the furthest any blockchain legislation has come thus far in the U.S. Congress.

It follows on from remarks by the government antitrust boss, who said that blockchain technology could be the answer to preventing new market monopolies from forming in future.

The bill shows an increasing awareness and respect for blockchain technology and digital currency in Washington. Should the law pass as proposed, it could spark further legislation in the U.S., and could lead to a more defined legal framework for digital currency and blockchain companies in future.

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