Cambridge Analytica And British Parent Shut Down After Facebook Scandal: Cambridge Analytica, the firm embroiled in a controversy over its handling of Facebook Inc user data, and its British parent SCL Elections Ltd, is shutting down immediately after suffering a sharp drop in business, the company says on Wednesday.
Cambridge Analytica And British Parent Shut Down After Facebook Scandal
The company will begin bankruptcy proceedings, it says, after losing clients and facing mounting legal fees resulting from the scandal over reports the company harvesting personal data about millions of Facebook users beginning in the year 2014.
The siege of media coverage has driven away virtually all of the Company’s customers and suppliers, the statement says.
It has determined that it is no longer viable to continue operating the business, which left Cambridge Analytical with no realistic alternative to placing the company into administration.
Allegations of the improper use of data for the 87 million Facebook users by Cambridge Analytical, which was hired by President Donald Trump’s 2016 U.S. election campaign, has hurt the shares of the world’s biggest social network and prompting multiple official investigations in the United States and Europe.
Over the past several months, Cambridge Analytical has the subject of numerous unfound accusation and despite company’s efforts to correct the record, has to vilify for activity that is not only legal but widely accepted as a standard component of online advertising in both the political and commercial arenas, the company’s statement says.
The firm is shutting down effectively on Wednesday and employees has telling to turn in their computers, the Wall Street Journal reported earlier.
The Cambridge Analytical sign has to remove from the reception area of its London offices on Wednesday. At SCL’s Washington, D.C. office, a man declining to answer questions from a Reuters reporter.
After the announcement, Britain’s data regulator says it will continue civil and criminal investigations of a firm and will pursue individuals and directors as appropriate despite the shutdown.
We will also monitor closely any successor companies using our powers to audit and inspect, to ensure the public is safeguarding, a spokeswoman for the Information Commissioner’s Office says in a statement.
Cambridge Analytical was creating around the year 2013 initially with the focus in United States elections with $15 million in backing from the billionaire Republican donor Robert Mercer and a name choosing by future Trump White House adviser Steve Bannon, the New York Times reports.
Cambridge Analytical marketing itself as a provider of consumer research targeting advertising and other data-relating services to both political and corporate clients.
After Trump won the White House in the year 2016, in part with the firm’s help, Cambridge Analytical CEO Alexander Nix went to more clients to pitch his services, the Times reporting last year.
The company boasting it can develop psychological profiles of consumers and voters which was a secret sauce it used to sway them more efficiently than traditional advertising could.
One unanswering question in a Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into whether there was any collusion between Trump’s campaign and Russia is the weather.
Russia’s Internet Research Agency or Russian intelligence used data Cambridge Analytical obtaining from the Facebook or sources to help to target and time messages during the campaign that is anti-Hillary Clinton, pro-Trump and political and racially divisive.
Bannon is the former vice president of the London-based firm, and Mueller has to ask it to provide internal documents about how its data and analyses are using in the Trump campaign, according to sources familiar with the investigation.
Reporting by Dustin Volz in Washington, Andy Bruce in London and Munsif Vengattil in Bengaluru; Writing by John Whitesides; Editing by Patrick Graham and Bill Rigby.
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