Trump campaign data firm harvested Facebook data

Trump campaign data firm harvested Facebook data

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The attorney general for the US state of Massachusetts is launching an investigation into alleged harvesting of Facebook profiles by a firm employed by Donald Trump’s election campaign.
Investigations by the Observer and New York Times newspapers claim details from 50 million profiles were gathered without the users’ knowledge.
The company, Cambridge Analytica, was suspended from Facebook on Friday.

Both Facebook and Cambridge Analytica deny any wrongdoing.
The American data analysis firm – which is not associated with the famous British university – is well known for the role it played in President Trump’s election campaign, where it provided intricate data on the thoughts of American voters.
Allegations against it centre on a professor from the University of Cambridge, Aleksandr Kogan, who designed a personality testing Facebook app called thisisyourdigitallife. The app was a private enterprise, and not part of his university work.
The app, created in November 2013 for the Facebook platform, asked users for permission to access their profile information – and also that of their friends’.
It is alleged that Mr Kogan then sold that data on to Cambridge Analytica, in violation of Facebook’s policies.
A whistleblower who worked at Cambridge Analytica spoke to The Guardian, claiming that he worked with Mr Kogan “to harvest millions of people’s profiles.”
“We exploited Facebook… and built models to exploit what we knew about them and target their inner demons. That was the basis the entire company was built on,” he said. -BBC

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