In the wake of Facebook's Cambridge Analytica data scandal, some high-profile companies have suspended ties with the social network amid the controversy. Earlier this month, it was revealed that Facebook allowed a researcher from Cambridge Analytica -- which worked on Donald Trump's presidential campaign -- to use data collected from 50 million users without their consent. A wave of backlash ensued, Facebook's stock plummeted, and the Federal Trade Commission is now investigating the company. On top of this, companies are distancing themselves from Facebook despite CEO Mark Zuckerberg's apologies and vows to safeguard users' privacy. Here's a list of companies that have cut ties with Facebook in the wake of the Cambridge Analytica scandal.
'Data rights are human rights" is the rallying cry of this gripping, challenging documentary by Karim Amer and Jehane Noujaim, about the biggest scandal of our time: the gigantic question mark over the legality of the Brexit vote. It is about the Trump campaign, the Leave.EU campaign and many other reckless electoral adventures all over the world and their connection with Cambridge Analytica, the British data research company that cunningly harvested information from millions of Facebook users and their friends via an innocuous-seeming "personality" questionnaire. They put this gigantic database to lucrative work with machine-tooled marketing campaigns for Trump and the Brexiters; after the company declared bankruptcy, its documentation may never come to light. At the centre of the film is Brittany Kaiser, a former Cambridge Analytica employee who blows the whistle on her employers' connections, including those with the Bad Boys of Brexit, whose bad-tempered éminence grise Arron Banks is now trying to silence Observer journalist Carole Cadwalladr – as well as this film – with legal threats. We are aware of these issues in the first place only because of the magnificently tough investigative reporting by Cadwalladr, who asks if we can ever again have a free and fair election.
Facebook is facing a £500,000 fine in the United Kingdom over its role in the Cambridge Analytica data scandal. On Wednesday, the UK's Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) said the fine is the maximum amount permitted under UK law and has been imposed due to two breaches of the Data Protection Act 1998. The UK data watchdog also intends to launch a criminal prosecution against SCL Elections Ltd, Cambridge Analytica's now-defunct parent company, for failing to properly deal with the ICO's investigation. The data-harvesting escapades of Cambridge Analytica, which impacted up to 87 million users in the US, UK, and beyond, has been the focus of a recent ICO investigation. Information was "improperly shared" with the company, without user consent, for the purpose of voter profiling.
Facebook just launched a new Help Center tool that tells users whether their data was shared with Cambridge Analytica. The tool specifically mentions which user information was accessed by the controversial British political consulting firm. Social media director for The Next Web, Matt Navarra, was the first one to spot the launch of the new Facebook tool on Tuesday. Navarra took to Twitter to share his discovery and encouraged everyone to check out the tool to see if they are affected by the Cambridge Analytica data breach. Navarra appears to have used the tool because the screenshot he uploaded as part of his tweet shows the result of his inquiry to the new Help Center tool.