A link between Twitter and Cambridge Analytica has been brought to light after it was revealed that the corporation sold massive data access to a man behind selling info of 87 million Facebook users to a political consulting firm.
In 2015, Aleksandr Kogan's commercial firm Global Science Research (GSR) bought access to data from Twitter for one day. Kogan later became notorious for created a quiz to obtain private information from Facebook for Cambridge Analitica. The Silicon Valley company admitted the fact. But according to Twitter, which conducted an internal probe, Kogan’s firm didn't leak any private data. The sold information was based on tweets made from December 2014 to April 2015.
The researcher’s enterprise was said to use Twitter’s standard option. It uses special software, called application programming interfaces (APIs), and sells the data, which may even cover tweets, to other enterprises for analysis. However to, get access to the data companies must reveal their purposes and end beneficiary. Twitter also specifically precise that private direct messages are not sold.
The company harvested $90 million in the first quarter for “data licensing and other revenue,” which has incidentally showed 20% growth.
Cambridge Analytica came into the spotlight after media reports emerged that the personal information of nearly 90 million Facebook users had been harvested by this consultancy firm without their permission through a special app, designed by Kogan. The firm gathered data to develop a mechanism that would predict and influence electoral behavior and reportedly sold the information.
Kogan is currently a defendant in a class action lawsuit filed in the US against the social network and the political consulting company on behalf of UK and US users. Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg apologized and promised to patch security vulnerabilities, tightening access for third-party apps.Zuckerberg also testified before the US Congress over privacy concerns. Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey as well as Google CEO Sundar Pichai have been called too.
Facebook, along with Twitter and Google, have been in hot water since the 2016 US election. In November 2017 all three companies had to testy before Congress about the integrity of their platforms, which vulnerabilities allegedly let meddle with the voters’ behavior.