A deep dive: Cambridge Analytica

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Almost one-quarter of Pennsylvanians had their personal data compromised on Facebook by Cambridge Analytica and other third parties.

The app collected data on 87 million Facebook users, even those who did not download the app themselves.

On Wednesday, Cambridge Analytica said it and SCL Elections would be commencing insolvency proceedings after "numerous and unfounded" accusations, vilification, and "siege of media coverage" had "driven away virtually all of the company's customers and suppliers". The chair of the House of Commons committee looking into Cambridge Analytica and SCL Group's activities, Damian Collins, has warned that investigations retain their relevancy, and that the companies will not be allowed to "delete their data history by closing".

In a statement Wednesday, Facebook said, "This doesn't change our commitment and determination to understand exactly what happened and make sure it doesn't happen again".

Facebook has informed the government that "only 335 people" in India were directly affected through the installation of an app and another 562,120 people were "potentially affected" as friends of those users. It denies wrongdoing and yesterday it announced that the company and its parent, SCL Group, would be wound down due to loss of business as a result of the scandal. The New York Times reported that officials from Cambridge Analytica and SCL have raised the possibility of using Emerdata as a rebranding of Cambridge Analytica by buying the latter's data and intellectual property. Facebook has over 20 crore users in India.

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"We need to get to the bottom of how personal data is used to target the public and target individuals", Ms Denham said. Nix was suspended by Cambridge Analytica's board after Britain's Channel 4 published an undercover camera investigation in which he was caught discussing dirty election tricks like using sex workers to seduce and then blackmail candidates.

Cambridge Analytica sought information on Facebook to build psychological profiles on a large portion of the USA electorate, and was hired by President Donald Trump's 2016 U.S. election campaign. Whichever way you look at it, the sheer amount of data that could have been sourced surpasses the level of current known mass-surveillance techniques used by governments. According to business filings in the UK, Cambridge Analytica funder Rebekah Mercer and her sister Jennifer are listed as Emerdata directors, as are former acting chief executive officers Alexander Tayler and Julian Wheatland.

In 2013 Dr. Aleksandr Kogan, a research associate at the Department of Psychology of Cambridge University built a 3rd-party profiling application to use for his research. Additionally, parallel bankruptcy proceedings will soon be commenced on behalf of Cambridge Analytica and certain of the Company's USA affiliates in the United States Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of NY.

Cambridge Analytica did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

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