• 02May,2018

    Twitter bans Cambridge Analytica from its ad platform

    According the reports of Sunday Telegraph, after the Facebook data scandal, it has now come to notice that Twitter had also sold users data to a Cambridge Analytica researcher who gathered the data of nearly 87 million Facebook users without their knowledge.

    Report says, Twitter sold public data access in 2015 to Aleksandr Kogan, a psychology researcher with University of Cambridge and his company Global Science Research (GSR).

    We are aware that the app "thisisyourdigitallife" which collected data from millions of Facebook users without their consent in 2014-2015 was developed by Kogan and his firm.

    It has emerged that Cambridge Analytica, has also been banned from advertising on Twitter’s platform.

    According to the reports of TechCrunch, A Twitter  spokesperson confirmed, what the company describes as a “policy decision to off-board advertising from all accounts owned and operated by Cambridge Analytica on advertising”, adding the decision was taken “weeks” ago.

    “This decision is based on our determination that Cambridge Analytica operates using a business model that inherently conflicts with acceptable Twitter Ads business practices. Cambridge Analytica may remain an organic user on our platform, in accordance with the Twitter Rules,” the company spokesperson added.

    The move is unrelated to reports yesterday that Twitter had sold public user data to Dr Aleksandr Kogan, the Cambridge University academic who sold Facebook data to Cambridge Analytica in 2014, after harvesting it via an app that drew on Facebook’s APIs to pull information on users and their friends.

    Last month Kogan told a UK parliamentary committee he had subsequently used some of the money Cambridge Analytica had paid him for gathering and processing the Facebook data to buy some Twitter data, though he said he had intended to use that for his own purposes, not for selling to others.

    Twitter’s spokesperson also said,  “Based on the recent reports, we conducted our own internal review and did not find any access to any private data about people who use Twitter.  Unlike many other services, Twitter is public by its nature. People come to Twitter to speak publicly, and public Tweets are viewable and searchable by anyone. In 2015, GSR [Kogan’s company] did have one-time API access to a random sample of public Tweets from a five-month period from December 2014 to April 2015.”

    Cambridge Analytica has also denied undertaking a project with Kogan’s company that used Twitter data.

    In a blog post late last month, Twitter reiterated some of the policies it has in place to limit access to public Twitter data even when a developer is paying for it, as Kogan was.

    “We prohibit developers from inferring or deriving sensitive information like race or political affiliation, or attempts to match a user’s Twitter information with other personal identifiers in unexpected ways,” it wrote, flagging the Restricted Uses page for more info on types of behaviors it said are not tolerated, and adding: “Developers who are found to be in violation of our policies are subject to enforcement actions, including immediate termination.”

    Despite shutting Cambridge Analytica from running ads on its platform, Twitter has not suspended the company’s verified Twitter account, which the company continues to use to tweet denials related to the Facebook data misuse scandal.

    Source : TechCrunch

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