Cambridge Analytica shuts down after Facebook user-data scandal

Cambridge Analytica, a data firm that worked for President Donald Trump’s 2016 campaign, is shutting down following the disclosure of its misuse of Facebook data,” Rebecca Ballhaus and Jenny Gross report for The Wall Street Journal.

MacDailyNews Note: As per “misuse” of Facebook data, please see:

The problem isn’t Cambridge Analytica: It’s Facebook by Kalev Leetaru for Forbes.

“In March, the company suspended its chief executive, Alexander Nix, and said it was launching an independent investigation to determine if the company engaged in any wrongdoing in its work on political campaigns,” Ballhaus and Gross report. “Nigel Oakes, the founder of SCL Group, Cambridge Analytica’s British affiliate, confirmed that both companies were closing down.”

“”The company decided to close its doors because it was losing clients and facing mounting legal fees in the Facebook investigation, a person familiar with the matter said,” Ballhaus and Gross report. “The firm is shutting down effective Wednesday and employees have been told to turn in their computers.”

Read more in the full article here.

“The Trump campaign never used the psychographic data at the heart of a whistleblower who once worked to help acquire the data’s reporting — principally because it was relatively new and of suspect quality and value,” Major Garrett reported for CBS News in March. “Trump’s campaign used Cambridge Analytica during the primaries and in the summer because it was never certain the Republican National Committee would be a willing, cooperative partner. Cambridge Analytica instead was a hedge against the RNC, in case it wouldn’t share its data.”

“The crucial decision was made in late September or early October when Mr. Trump’s son-in-law Jared Kushner and Brad Parscale, Mr. Trump’s digital guru on the 2016 campaign, decided to utilize just the RNC data for the general election and used nothing from that point from Cambridge Analytica or any other data vendor,” Garrett reported. “The Trump campaign had tested the RNC data, and it proved to be vastly more accurate than Cambridge Analytica’s, and when it was clear the RNC would be a willing partner, Mr. Trump’s campaign was able to rely solely on the RNC.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Now if only Facebook would follow suit.

Beleaguered Facebook heading down a troubled path – April 18, 2018
I was one of the very first people on Facebook. I shouldn’t have trusted Mark Zuckerberg – April 17, 2018
Facebook AI predicts your future and sells this info to advertisers – April 16, 2018
Why there shouldn’t be a ‘next Facebook’ – April 13, 2018
How Facebook lets brands and politicians target users – April 11, 2018
Facebook’s Zuckerberg was ready to slam Apple if Congress asked him about Tim Cook’s privacy comments – April 11, 2018
Apple co-founder Woz quits Facebook – April 9, 2018
Mark Zuckerberg admits Facebook scans the contents of all private Messenger texts – April 4, 2018
Facebook to warn 87 million users that their data ‘may have been improperly shared with Cambridge Analytica’ – April 4, 2018
Mark Zuckerberg and the never-ending stench of Facebook – April 2, 2018
Apple may be the biggest winner from Facebook’s data scandal – April 2, 2018
Mark Zuckerberg blasts Apple CEO Cook’s criticism of Facebook as ‘extremely glib and not at all aligned with the truth’ – April 2, 2018
Apple CEO Cook: Facebook should have self-regulated, but it’s too late for that now – March 28, 2018
U.S. FTC will investigate Facebook over privacy or lack thereof – March 26, 2018
Apple CEO Cook calls for more data oversight, ‘well-crafted regulation’ after Facebook debacle – March 26, 2018
Facebook has been collecting call history and SMS data from Android devices for years; Apple iOS devices unaffected – March 25, 2018
Apple CEO Cook ramps up pressure on Facebook, calls for more regulations on data privacy – March 24, 2018
Steve Jobs tried to warn Mark Zuckerberg about privacy in 2010 – March 23, 2018
Facebook has gotten too big, too powerful, too influential for Mark Zuckerberg to handle – March 23, 2018
How to block Facebook completely from your Mac – March 22, 2018
How Facebook made it impossible to delete Facebook – March 22, 2018
What to expect from Facebook’s Zuckerberg if he testifies before Congress – March 21, 2018
Why Facebook’s blatant disregard for users’ privacy could be very good for Apple – March 21, 2018
Facebook’s surveillance machine – March 21, 2018
Mark Zuckerberg and Sheryl Sandberg AWOL from Facebook’s damage control session – March 20, 2018
U.S. FTC reportedly probing Facebook’s abuse of personal data as UK summons Zuckerberg for questioning – March 20, 2018
The problem isn’t Cambridge Analytica: It’s Facebook – March 19, 2018
Apple: Privacy is a fundamental right – September 27, 2017


  1. Yet, King Obama, who was given ALL of the US FaceBook accounts and access to stuff no other company gets, is given a big fat pass by the new media.
    Big surprise, Obummer is their golden child, not to be looked down upon for anything.

    1. Thunk!…the sound of your grey matter between your ears.
      Typical Trumpian denial.
      The Obama campaign collected data with its own campaign app, complied with Facebook’s terms of service and, most importantly, received permission from users before using the data.

      An estimated 1 million Obama supporters gave the campaign access to their Facebook data in order to spread the word about their campaign. Campaign officials say they kept the data secure and did not sell or give it to third parties.

    2. Absolutely correct and glad you pointed it out. Both Obama and Trump campaigns worked it to their advantage to win respective elections.

      Big difference is the Obama campaign bragged about how smart they were in 2012. I’ve seen the snarky video testimonials on the internet and also saw and read about it in the media. They were so proud of themselves and the media just adored them for their modern tech technique cleverness.

      Fast forward to the 2016 election. The other party quietly used it to their advantage to win the presidential election. Enter the outraged childish Democrats complaining to their water carriers in the media to make a big deal about it. Well it worked and the relentless pressure and daily stories that would not go away caused them to relent and shut it down. Funny, the media NEVER does this for Republicans. That’s called media bias, DavGreg.

      Classic DEMOCRAT DOUBLE STANDARD grande! When it works in their favor it is the greatest thing since sliced bread. But when the challenging team uses the same, waaaaaahhhh. 😭

      Simply more despicable behavior from the out of power party …

      1. J.P. Morgan and Willie Sutton both got a lot of money from banks. Classic DOUBLE STANDARD that only Willie was regarded as a criminal. Why? Because he robbed banks instead of founding them.

        As Gotcha points out, the Obama Campaign used Facebook data it collected with the users’ consent, while Cambridge Analytica and the Trump Campaign used data that was collected by deception. Hardly the same thing.

        Of course, I understand that you have some difficulty with the concept of “consent,” judging by your vigorous defense of Bill Cosby even after the deposition in which he admitted to drugging women in order to have sex. You were equally emphatic that bragging about grabbing women by the genitals is just “locker room talk.”

        Hint: It isn’t informed consent if the person is misinformed.

  2. They have not shut down, just changed their ID. Look up Emerdata and see what stands out. Right, the same directors, including right-wing extremist and Cambridge Anal founder Bob Mercer’s daughters and Alex Taylor, Cambridge Anal’s acting CEO and tech honcho to pick just a few names. And hey, they operate out of the same address as SCL Elections, part of the umbrella group C-A is under. Shut down? More like a tactical retreat.

  3. Good riddance. I agree whole heartedly with the MDN take. It’s too bad Facebook is from a pathetic terrorist nation that has even less ethical and moral insight, so they’ll probably stay open for business using every means at their disposal (unfounded insults, smoke and mirrors what aboutism, patriotic whining, lots and lots and lots and lots of patriotic whining and a big glamor show) to stay open.

  4. DARN! Premature burial. They’re apparently pulling yet-another fast-one, setting up shop at exactly the same location with the same people for the same purpose:

    Cambridge Analytica dismantled for good? Nope: It just changed its name to Emerdata

    The UK’s official registrar of businesses and organizations, Companies House, has a recent listing for a company called Emerdata Limited, headquartered at the same office as SCL Elections and run by much of the same management and investors as Cambridge Analytica. It even describes itself as a “data processing, hosting and related activities” organization.

    For instance, Dr Alexander Taylor was appointed a director of Emerdata on March 28. That’s Cambridge Analytica’s acting CEO and data wizard Dr Alexander Taylor. Julian Wheatland is an Emerdata director who is also a director within the SCL network of organizations. . . .

    So, it seems the shutdown may be less a business catastrophe than a marketing exercise. ®

    The worm turns. 🐍🐍🐍

  5. Why is MDN allowing ad companies (Google,…) to serve up to FIVE adds from the same source on a single page?
    Reporting those ads doesn’t seem to help.

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