Cambridge Analytica's ex-CEO backs out of giving evidence to UK parliament

Cambridge Analytica's ex-CEO backs out of giving evidence to UK parliament
From TechCrunch - April 17, 2018

Alexander Nix,the former CEO of the political consultancy firm at the center of a storm about mishandled Facebook users data, has backed out of re-appearing in front of the UK parliament for a second time.

Nix had been scheduled to take questions from the DCMS committee thats probing online misinformation tomorrow afternoon.

In a press notice today, the committee said: The former CEO of Cambridge Analytica,Alexander Nix, is now refusing to appear before the Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee at a public sessiontomorrow, Wednesday 18thApril, at 2.15pm. He cites the Information Commissioners Offices ongoing investigation as a reason not to appear.

Nix has already givenevidence to the committeein Februarybut last month it recalled him, saying it has fresh questions for him in light of revelations that millions of Facebook users had their data passed to CA in violation ofFacebookspolicies.

It has also said its keen to press him on some of his previous answers, as a result of evidence it has heard sinceincluding detailed testimony from CA whistleblower Chris Wylie late last month.

In a statement today about Nixs refusal to appear, committee chair Damian Collins said it might issue a formal summons.

We do not accept Mr Nixs reason for not appearing in a public session before the Committee. We have taken advice and he is not been charged with any criminal offence and there is no active legal proceedings and we plan to raise this with the Information Commissioner when we meet her this week. There is therefore no legal reason why Mr Nix cannot appear, he said.

The Committee is minded to issue a formal summons for him to appear on a named day in the very near future. Well make a further statement about this next week.

When Nix attending the hearing on February 27 he claimed Cambridge Analytica does not work with Facebookdata, also telling the committee: We do not have Facebook data, though he said the company uses the social media platform to advertise, and also as a means to gather data, adding: We roll out surveys on Facebook that the public can engage withifthey elect to.

Since then Facebook has said information on as many as 87 million users of its platform could have been passed to CA, via a quiz app that was able to exploit its friends API to pull data on Facebook users friends.


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