Facebook suspends Cambridge Analytica whistleblower's account

20 March, 2018, 19:58 | Author: Wade Massey
  • A Facebook logo is seen through the windows of the NASDAQ stock exchange as people walk by in Times Square New York City.- AFP

Fears of increased regulation also weighed on shares of Twitter, Google parent Alphabet and Snapchat parent Snap Inc. It also denied that the Facebook data was used by the Trump campaign and says it didn't work on the Brexit referendum. However, developers used the user data resources Facebook put at their disposal, and then went creative about using said data for election-related purposes.

"We are aware of the issues that have been raised but can not comment on whether we are investigating", an FTC spokesperson said in an emailed statement.

If the FTC finds Facebook violated terms of the consent decree, it has the power to fine the company thousands of dollars a day per violation.

We are committed to vigorously enforcing our policies to protect people's information. "We appreciate the opportunity to answer questions the FTC may have", Facebook Deputy Chief Privacy Officer Rob Sherman told Reuters.

"The lid is being opened on the black box of Facebook data practices, and the picture is not pretty", said Frank Pasquale, a University of Maryland law professor who has written about Silicon Valley's use of data.

The UK's Information Commissioner's Office said Monday that it was trying to obtain a warrant to search the offices of Cambridge Analytica in London.

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But despite the increasing demands for answers from lawmakers - not to mention other issues plaguing the company, like reports of Facebook's stock tanking and a social media campaign encouraging users to delete Facebook - the only thing that can be heard out of 1 Hacker Way is deafening silence. It was not clear which firm they were going to. U.S. lawmakers have also called on CEO Mark Zuckerberg to testify before Congress.

Created in 2013, Cambridge Analytica markets itself as a source of consumer research, targeted advertising and other data-related services to both political and corporate clients. Facebook no longer allows third-party apps to collect data in this way, and it knew of the data breach with Cambridge Analytics two years ago, according to Wylie.

However, further allegations about the firm's tactics were reported late on March 19 by British broadcaster Channel 4 which said it secretly taped interviews with senior Cambridge Analytica executives in which they boasted of their ability to sway elections in countries around the world with digital manipulation and traditional political trickery.

"Since early previous year we have subsequently cooperated with the ICO on multiple lines of enquiry, including most recently on the Facebook data and derivatives that we received from GSR, the research company that we engaged in good faith to legally supply data for research". Facebook declined immediate comment.

Cambridge Analytica failed to respond to an access request by the United Kingdom information commissioner's office, forcing the authority to seek a warrant "to obtain information and access to systems and evidence", it said in a statement on Tuesday. It has come under scrutiny in recent days following reports that it harvested data from 50 million Facebook users in an attempt to influence American voters.

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