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Mastercard sees ‘a lot of promise’ in blockchain tech if safety and simplicity are prioritized

Mainstream brands and financial services firms are testing the waters of crypto, but many are hesitant to fully dive into the blockchain realm due to uncertainty and a general lack of trust.

Every industry has its hiccups and bumps, but crypto has been especially hit hard recently, facing a lot of headwinds from regulators and its own internal pitfalls as it tries to scale.

“The crypto industry has gone through a lot in the last few quarters,” said Raj Dhamodharan, Mastercard’s EVP and head of crypto and blockchain, during a blockchain-focused panel at the company’s North America Innovation Day event.

While the web3 world has seen a significant influx of capital, innovation and talent, more work is needed to ensure traditional players — as well as new ones — can enter the ecosystem confidently.

“People look at crypto and think of it as an investment, but there’s a whole sector that’s a lot more useful for financial industries as a whole,” Dhamodharan said. “The technology itself holds a lot of promise.”

Crypto technology has a handful of use cases and utilities today, like the ability to store and move capital and value, but those use cases are limited when safety and simplicity aren’t prioritized, Dhamodharan said.

“What you need for this tech to scale globally is interoperability and underlying security of trust,” said Johan Gerber, EVP, security and cyber innovation. Mastercard aims to provide a technological foundation that allows everyone from small startups to massive financial institutions to innovate and build upon.

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