Looks like legislation is working hard and fast to catch up.
Just this week, the US Senate Banking Committee spent almost two full hours tackling different issues surrounding blockchain technology and cryptocurrencies. And although there were clear and reasonable concerns about “gaps and vulnerabilities,” officials were overall positive that these gaps can be filled and law enforcement can keep up.
While that provided a big sigh of relief and eased up the tension for cryptocurrencies—which have been plummeting amid allegations of Ponzi scams, trade manipulation, and impending harsh regulations, another bump is on the way.
On Valentine’s Day next week (February 14), at 10am EST, two subcommittees of the US Congress will be taking their turn on sizing up the implications of blockchain technology and cryptocurrencies. The Subcommittee on Research and Technology and the Subcommittee on Oversight will be conducting a hearing exploring “the science of blockchain technology and its potential and emerging applications beyond cryptocurrency and financial technology,” according to a release from the Committee on Science, Space, and Technology.
Joining the subcommittees are IBM’s vice president of blockchain technologies, Gennaro “Jerry” Cuomo, National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) director of the Information Technology Laboratory Dr. Charles H. Romine, cybersecurity policy analyst Chris Jaikaran, among others.
The hearing, titled Beyond Bitcoin: Emerging Applications for Blockchain Technology “will focus on applications for blockchain technology across a broad range of industries, including cybersecurity, identity authentication and verification, supply chain risk management, and digital rights management, according to the document. An assessment of the necessary supporting guidelines will also be tackled.
Judging from the contents of the document, it seems that legislation has finally opened its arms to the technology. The only question is, by how much? What regulations will come of these hearings—and how will these affect the blockchain industry for the years to come?