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Jimmy Patronis to address Blockchain Task Force

Technology can be used to record cryptocurrency transactions.

Chief Financial Officer Jimmy Patronis will speak Monday with the Florida Blockchain Task Force about the changing currency world.

Blockchain, a method of recording transactions of cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin, has been a priority for the Cabinet member. He has pushed for better ways to prevent fraud and follow transactions with nontraditional currencies.

The Task Force meets at 1 p.m. Monday in the Senate Office Building in Tallahassee.

The Florida Legislature also has given strong attention to the issue.

A blockchain is a digital ledger that allows parties to conduct transactions without the use of a third party acting as a central authority to validate those transactions. It ensures the identities of parties in a transaction are identified, and that parties agree on details of transactions. For each transaction that occurs, it gets permanently encoded into a block of data and given a digital signature.

The technology could be used for a variety of financial purposes by state and local governments. For example, it can used for online casino activity, for example.

The Florida Legislature last year created the task force through a bill (SB 1024) signed by Gov. Ron DeSantis in May.

The group will study ways state, county and municipal governments can benefit from transitioning to a blockchain-based system for recordkeeping, security, and service delivery.

Part of that includes preparing recommendations to bring back to the Governor and Legislature.

Patronis has made crypto-currency regulation a priority. In March, he launched a Consumer Protections website specifically to educate consumers and guard against scams.

“Cryptocurrency is a new word for many Floridians and it’s critical that you fully understand how new forms of digital and virtual currency work before you invest,” he said at the time.

“It’s my goal to ensure Florida’s consumers are informed of the risks and benefits of this emerging industry and know how to protect themselves from fraud and scams.”

Written By

Jacob Ogles has covered politics in Florida since 2000 for regional outlets including SRQ Magazine in Sarasota, The News-Press in Fort Myers and The Daily Commercial in Leesburg. His work has appeared nationally in The Advocate, Wired and other publications. Events like SRQ’s Where The Votes Are workshops made Ogles one of Southwest Florida’s most respected political analysts, and outlets like WWSB ABC 7 and WSRQ Sarasota have featured his insights. He can be reached at jacobogles@hotmail.com.

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