United Kingdom to continue probe despite Cambridge Analytica shutting shop

A separate investigation by the House of Commons committee on digital, culture, media and sport into fake news will also continue to examine issues relating to Cambridge Analytica.

Prince who is the founder of the private military contractor, Blackwater, and is the brother-in-law of Education Secretry Betsy Devos, is a known Trump supporter with ties to the super PAC which paid for Cambridge Analytica's work on behalf of the Trump campaign.

The decision was made less than two months after Cambridge Analytica and Facebook became embroiled in a data-harvesting scandal that compromised the personal information of up to 87 million people.

In a statement issued last night, the firm denied the claims, saying that its activities were not only legal, but also widely accepted as a standard component of online advertising in both the political and commercial arenas. The commissioner's office said Thursday that it will continue "civil and criminal investigations and will seek to pursue individuals and directors as appropriate and necessary, even where companies may no longer be operating".

His comments will keep the pressure on bosses including Alexander Nix, former chief executive of Cambridge Analytica, whose answers to parliament Mr Collins considers unsatisfactory.

Ahead of the United States presidential election in 2016, Cambridge Analytica used its Facebook data to build psychological profiles on a large portion of the electorate.

Julian Wheatland, who announced Cambridge Analytica's closure, is also listed as one of the directors of Emerdata.

Facebook estimates it shared a total of 70.4 million American users' data with third-party developers.

"The siege of media coverage has driven away virtually all of the company's customers and suppliers", Cambridge Analytica said in a statement.

Revelations about the misuse of data, published in March by The New York Times and The Observer of London, plunged Facebook into crisis and prompted regulators and lawmakers to open investigations into Cambridge Analytica.

A published report says the data firm at the center of Facebook's privacy debacle is closing its doors.

The company was able to amass the database quickly with the help of an app that appeared to be a personality test.

Meanwhile, British authorities today said that their investigation into the data breach scandal involving Cambridge Analytica will not be impacted with the shutdown of the political consulting firm.

The firm shut down effective Wednesday and employees have been told to turn in their computers, the Wall Street Journal reported earlier. Other Emerdata directors include people associated with Cambridge Analytica.

  • Jon Douglas