17 March 2018

Kenya: Facebook Suspends Data Analytics Firm Linked to Uhuru Campaign

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(file photo).

Facebook has suspended accounts for Strategic Communication Laboratories, the parent company of Cambridge Analytica, the data analytics firm accused of designing a divisive campaign in Kenya ahead of the 2017 presidential elections.

The suspension was issued because Cambridge Analytica violated its policies, the social media giant said on Friday in a statement.

Facebook claims that back in 2015 Cambridge Analytica obtained Facebook user information without approval from the social network through work the company did with a University of Cambridge psychology lecturer named Dr Aleksandr Kogan.

"The professor lied to us and violated our platform policies by passing data from an app that was using FB login to SCL/Cambridge Analytica, which does political, government and military work around the globe. He also passed that data to Christopher Wyloe of Eunoia Technologies," Facebook said.

A report issued by a London based Privacy International that fights for privacy in the world said that ahead of the 2017 General Election, the Cambridge Analytica led online campaigns that either targeted Nasa leader Raila Odinga or touted President Kenyatta's accomplishment.

It said that the company discretely worked for President Kenyatta during his re-election campaign.

Cambridge Analytica refuted the claims and said that it was not involved in any negative political content.

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