'I believe Cambridge Analytica's client in India was the Congress,' says whistleblower

WION Web Team
India Published: Mar 27, 2018, 07:51 PM(IST)

Former Cambridge Analytica employee Christopher Wylie during his deposition before the UK parliamentary committee Photograph:( AFP )

Cambridge Analytica whistleblower Christopher Wylie at a public hearing before the British Parliament's Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee said India's Congress party was one of its clients.

"When you look at Facebook's biggest market, India is the top in terms of numbers of users. Obviously, that's a country which is rife with political discord and opportunities for destabilisation," said Labour MP Paul Farrelly, member of the parliamentary committee, during his questioning.

"I know that they have done all kinds of projects. I don't remember a national project but I know regionally. India's so big that one state can be as big as Britain," the 28-year-old said.

"I believe their client in India was the Congress," Wylie told the Parliamentary committee. "They do have offices there, they do have a staff there," he added.

The ruling BJP was quick to hit out at Congress after Wylie's deposition, IT minister Ravi Shankar Prasad told reporters that Congress president "Rahul Gandhi has been exposed." "Congress lied to India," Ravi Shankar Prasad said. "Rahul Gandhi must apologise," he added.

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Earlier during the deposition before the committee, Wylie who worked for Cambridge Analytica earlier, declared that there is "tangible proof" that a Canada-based firm AIQ built the Ripon software to utilise algorithms from the Facebook data during the 2016 presidential campaign.

Ripon helped campaign managers to access voter database, target specific voters, conduct canvassing, manage fundraising and carry out surveys.

''It is categorically untrue, categorically untrue, that Cambridge Analytica has never used Facebook data," Wylie said, adding,"Facebook data and the acquisition using Aleksandr Kogan's (Cambridge University researcher) app was the foundational data set of the company. That is how the algorithms were developed. They spent a million dollars at least on that acquisition project." Watch the video here: 

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