“Fortunately we did not use it.” “Fortunately we did not use it.”
Mar 26, 2018

PM says UNP approached by Cambridge Analytica Featured

Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe says the UNP had been approached by the controversial British data analytics firm Cambridge Analytica, but that his party had declined the overture.

He made the revelation at a meeting of the Bar Association on March 24.

“I recently read on the scandal where Cambridge Analytica used the data of 50 million Facebook profiles to influence the outcome of the US Presidential election. I must say Cambridge Analytica came here and canvassed me also to get work for the UNP. Fortunately we did not use it,” the Premier divulged.

Cambridge Analytica denies any wrongdoing

A whistleblower, Christopher Wylie, says the data of about 50 million people was harvested for Cambridge Analytica before the rules on user consent were tightened up, according to the BBC.

Channel 4 News sent an undercover reporter to meet executives from data analytics firm Cambridge Analytica, following reports by the journalist Carole Cadwalladr in the Observer newspaper.

The firm had been credited with helping Donald Trump to presidential victory.

The reporter posed as a Sri Lankan businessman wanting to influence a local election.

Cambridge Analytica boss Alexander Nix was apparently filmed giving examples of how his firm could discredit political rivals by arranging various smear campaigns, including setting up encounters with prostitutes and staging situations in which apparent bribery could be caught on camera.
Documentary was "edited and scripted”

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Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg

The firm denies all the claims and says the documentary was "edited and scripted to grossly represent the nature of those conversations". It claims the conversations were led by the reporters.

The boss of Cambridge Analytica, Alexander Nix, has since been suspended, while Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg has been called on by a Commons parliamentary committee to give evidence.