A British artificial intelligence firm involved in the Vote Leave campaign has been handed a £400,000 contract to tap data from places such as social media sites to help steer the Government's response to Covid-19. Official documents from the Government show Faculty Science was awarded the contract by the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG) in April to provide data scientists who could set up "alternative data sources (e.g. They would, the contract said, apply data science and machine learning to the data, which could help identify trends, and then develop "interactive dashboards" to inform policymakers. It is understood the contract, awarded through the Government's G-Cloud framework, was designed to address an urgent need for the department to analyse real-time data and monitor the effect of Covid-19 on local communities. Faculty's AI technology can be used to process vast amounts of data and in the past was used for polling analysis by the Vote Leave campaign, run by Boris Johnson's adviser Dominic Cummings.