Coinbase Recruits Paul Grewal From Facebook

Paul Singh Grewal, Facebook's deputy general counsel Paul Grewal, deputy general counsel Facebook / photo by John Doiy

Paul Grewal, the legal leader who helped Facebook survive its Cambridge Analytica scandal, has joined Coinbase’s cryptocurrency platform.

Grewal is stepping into the role of chief legal officer for the San Francisco-based fintech firm after more than four years as Facebook’s vice president and deputy general counsel. In May 2016, Grewal left his job as a magistrate judge for the U.S. District Court in the Northern District of California to join the social media giant.

In a blog post on Wednesday, Coinbase CEO Emilie Choi wrote when asked Grewal why he wanted to take the job, he said, “I came to understand the vision for an open financial system for the world. And I saw how talented and dedicated the entire Coinbase team is in realizing that vision. I decided then and again that I had to be a part of this. ”

During his final couple years at Facebook, Grewal served as the front man for the company’s efforts to restore public trust after Facebook gave Cambridge Analytica permission to access the data of millions of users without their authorization.

On his San Jose bench, Grewal supervised several Big Tech intellectual property battles, including Apple v. Samsung a Oracle v. Google.

As a judge, Grewal drew attention for refusing to approve some law enforcement applications for digital surveillance, and for ordering a lawyer who made sexist comment to donate to a women’s legal not-for-profit.

A Facebook representative said Grewal wished the company well.