Investigations cannot be impeded by closure of Cambridge Analytica: UK Parliament committee

WION Web Team
London, UKUpdated: May 03, 2018, 07:09 AM IST

A laptop showing the Facebook logo is held alongside a Cambridge Analytica sign at the entrance to the building housing the offices of Cambridge Analytica. Photograph:(AFP)

Story highlights

CA said its parent company SCL Elections would also file for bankruptcy e

Cambridge Analytica(CA), the firm at the centre of a worldwide data breach of Facebook users, announced today that it was filing for bankruptcy and closing down.

"Despite Cambridge Analytica's unwavering confidence that its employees have acted ethically and lawfully, the siege of media coverage has driven away virtually all of the company's customers and suppliers," the company said in a statement.

"As a result, it has been determined that it is no longer viable to continue operating the business, which left Cambridge Analytica with no realistic alternative to placing the company into administration," it added.

CA said its parent company SCL Elections would also file for bankruptcy even as the chair of UK Parliament committee investigating the firm raised concerns over Cambridge Analytica and SCL Elections closing down.

"They are party to very serious investigations and those investigations cannot be impeded by the closure of these companies," said MP Damian Collins.

"I think it's absolutely vital that the closure of these companies is not used as an excuse to try and limit or restrict the ability of the authorities to investigate what they were doing," Collins added.

Cambridge Analytica's data breach which allegedly involved millions of users of Facebook users linked to US president Donald Trump's 2016 election campaign snowballed into a worldwide controversy after reports emerged several countries including Indian users' social networking account was hacked. 

Trump's campaign team, however, denied it ever used CA's data.

CA in its closing statement defended its decision to close down, adding: "This doesn't change our commitment and determination to understand exactly what happened and make sure it doesn't happen again."

As the data breach scandal became public, Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg was called in by the US House committee to answer questions on the details of the breach. Facebook is conducting its own investigation into the matter and has since tightened its privacy restrictions.

According to Facebook, data on up to 87 million of its users was harvested by an app and then passed on to the political consultancy.