Facebook has agreed to pay a 500,000-pound ($643,000 or Ksh66,407,974) fine in a privacy case stemming from the Cambridge Analytica scandal, agreeing to accept the fine without admitting any liability.
Britain’s Information Commissioner Office had leveled the fine after concluding Facebook processed the personal information of users unfairly by exposing it for use by app developers without informed consent.
Facebook was at pains to underline that the ICO had not found that the data had actually been transferred to Cambridge Analytica, which counted U.S. President Donald Trump’s 2016 election campaign among its clients.
Facebook associate general counsel Harry Kinmonth says the company has “made major changes” to the platform since that time and that it is “significantly restricting the information which app developers could access.”
Facebook – Cambridge Analytica Data Scandal
A March 2018 expose’ by Channel4 News revealed that Cambridge Analytica harvested the profiles of 50 million Facebook users. The data was then used alongside publicly available voter records to identify people more likely to vote for the Trump campaign.
The matter was also widely spoken of in Kenya. Evidence suggests that people with ties to Cambridge Analytica were actively involved in swaying public opinion in Kenya’s 2017 general elections.
It was recently revealed that Ms. Alexandra Phillips, now a member of parliament in the European Union pariament, worked with Jubilee re-election team among those journalists Alex Chamwada and John Allan Namu as a point-person for Cambridge Analytica works in the country.
Ms. Phillips claimed in a recording that President Kenyatta’s Jubilee party paid Cambridge Analytica around $6 million (Ksh619 million). Ms Phillips’ work was so secret she was told to say she was an “air hostess”
The saga forced the company to close operations in 2018 although related firms still exist.
Cambridge Analytica was started in 2013 as an offshoot of the SCL Group.
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