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Suspended Cambridge Analytica CEO to appear before UK parliament

Staff Writer |
The suspended CEO of Cambridge Analytica, Alexander Nix, will appear before a British parliamentary committee, the Culture, Media and Sport Committee said.

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Lawmakers in the United States and Europe are demanding to know more about Facebook's privacy practices after a whistleblower said Cambridge Analytica improperly accessed data to target U.S. and British voters.

The session will be Nix's second appearance before the committee and is likely to take place on April 17.

Britain's Information Commissioner welcomed Facebook's decision to end its partnerships with several large data brokers who help advertisers target people on the social network.

Facebook made the move after a scandal over how it handles personal information knocked billions of dollars off of its share price.

A committee of British lawmakers published written evidence on Thursday provided by a whistleblower who says information about 50 million Facebook users ended up in the hands of political consultancy Cambridge Analytica.

Cambridge Analytica said the documents did not support whistleblower Christopher Wylie's testimony to the committee this week.

Wylie, who formerly worked for Cambridge Analytica (CA), alleges the data was used to help to build profiles on American voters and raise support for Donald Trump in the 2016 U.S. presidential election.

He also alleges that CA was linked to Canadian firm AggregateIQ (AIQ), which he says was involved in the development of the software used to target voters. AggregateIQ, he says, received payment from a pro-Brexit campaign group before the 2016 referendum when Britain voted to quit the European Union.

This was co-ordinated with the lead "Vote Leave" group in a breach of British electoral funding rules, Wylie alleged. Vote Leave denies any wrongdoing.

Wylie appeared before the Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee of the British parliament on Tuesday. The committee said Wylie provided it with documents including a services agreement between AIQ and SCL Elections, an affiliate of Cambridge Analytica, dated September 2014.

The parliamentary committee's chairman has said it was "astonishing" that Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg decided not to answer lawmakers' questions, given the claims that Wylie had made about how data was used.

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