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1ST LEAD Report: Warrant sought for data firm linked to Trump campaign By dpa correspondents

Europe
20.03.2018
By our dpa-correspondent and Europe Online    auf Facebook posten  Auf Twitter posten  
London (dpa) - Britain‘s data watchdog will apply for a warrant to search the computers and servers of research firm Cambridge Analytica (CA), it was reported late Monday.

The Information Commissioner‘s Office (ICO) will use the warrant to examine the company, which has been accused of using information from potentially tens of millions of Facebook users without their consent for 2016 US election work, according to the Press Association (PA) news wire.

The warrant was needed as the firm, head-quartered in London, had been "unco-operative" with her investigation, Information Commissioner Elizabeth Dunham said according to PA.

An undercover sting operation by Britain‘s Channel 4 broadcast on Monday showed CA‘s chief executive Alexander Nix seemingly admitting the company carried out unethical campaigning tricks for its clients.

Channel 4‘s footage showed Nix appearing to put forward unethical campaign tricks including planting false reports online, hiring hidden subcontractors and setting up fake institutions and websites to gather data.

"These are things that don‘t necessarily need to be true, as long as they‘re believed," he was recorded as saying.

The company rejected the allegations made in the report.

"The report is edited and scripted to grossly misrepresent the nature of those conversations and how the company conducts its business," it said on its website.

"Cambridge Analytica does not condone or engage in entrapment, bribes or so-called ‘honeytraps‘, and nor does it use untrue material for any purpose," Nix said, according to the website statement.

Facebook said on Friday it had suspended its relationship with CA and its parent company, Strategic Communication Laboratories, over the allegations that CA used improperly obtained data from the social network‘s users in election work for US President Donald Trump‘s campaign.

 

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