Cambridge Analytica says it 'only' accessed data from 30 million Facebook usersBy Robin-Leigh Chetty 5 April 2018 | Categories: news
This latest bit of news in the Cambridge Analytica/Facebook data privacy scandal smacks of pure arrogance, with the firm claiming that reports of it accessing data from more than 87 million Facebook users has been greatly exaggerated.
In fact, the figure is far closer to 30 million, with none of the data said to be used during the 2016 US elections. This, however, is contradictory to Facebook's recent announcement which placed the maximum number of people potentially impacted by the data privacy violation at 87 million. The social media company added that it would take further steps, notifying affected users with a message at the top of their news feed.
As for what steps users should take after that is unclear, but the momentum of the #DeleteFacebok movement shows no signs of slowing down at this stage, especially as more details around the scandal are revealed and Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg continues to do damage control.
The result now is internet users are tasked with having to believe one of the two parties. Whether either can be trusted though, is far from certain.
Cambridge Analytica's response to the Facebook numbers is as follows:
"Today Facebook reported that information for up to 87 million people may have been improperly obtained by research company GSR (Global Science Research). Cambridge Analytica licensed data from GSR, as is clearly stated in our contract with the research company. We did not receive more data than this.
We did not use any GSR data in the work we did in the 2016 US presidential election.
Our contract with GSR stated that all data must be obtained legally, and this contract is now a matter of public record. We took legal action against GSR when we found out they had breached this contract.
When Facebook contacted us to let us know the data had been improperly obtained, we immediately deleted the raw data from our file server, and began the process of searching for and removing any of its derivatives in our system.
When Facebook sought further assurances a year ago, we carried out an internal audit to make sure that all the data, all derivatives, and all backups had been deleted, and gave Facebook a certificate to this effect.
We are now undertaking an independent third-party audit to demonstrate that no GSR data remains in our systems."
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