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Cambridge Analytica had plans to offshore data to evade regulatory scrutiny: Key takeaways from UK’s investigation

cambridge analytica

Cambridge Analytica and its parent company, SCL Group, had drawn up plans to offshore all data to evade regulatory scrutiny but could not implement them as investigations had already started, UK's data protection authority said as it concluded its investigation into the company. The Information Commissioner's Office's (ICO) said that the company had purchased 130 billion data points of more than 87 million Facebook users, mostly American voters, and combined them with other datasets to serve them political ads. It however concluded that SCL and Cambridge Analytica were not involved in influencing the Brexit referendum. In a letter to the British MP Julian Knight, who is the chairperson of the Digital, Culture and Media and Sport Select Committee, Elizabeth Denham, the Information Commissioner Officer, called it the ICO’s “final written account” to the British Parliament. The letter acknowledged parallel investigations into Facebook in Australia, Canada and the US which reached similar conclusions as the ICO. The large volumes of evidence that ICO processed reiterated their intial findings and no new lines of enquiry have been opened up. Background: ICO started investigating the use of personal data for political purposes in 2017 after multiple media organisations reported that Facebook data was harvested to target potential voters in the Brexit referendum and the US Presidential elections. ICO came into picture since SCL was a British firm. So far, the ICO has submitted three reports to the British Parliement and Denham last submitted evidence to the committee in April 2019. Methodology: Since April…

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