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Twitter Also Sold Data to Cambridge Analytica

by Harikrishna Mekala

Twitter Inc sold access of user data to Cambridge Analytica who are currently already under investigation for illegally obtaining the data of 87 million Facebook users information which was later used for political consulting without users consent. Aleksandr Kogan created a personality quiz on Facebook to mine information. When Cambridge Analytica was established the company was given access to all Tweets for one day.

“In 2015, GSR did have one-time API access to a random sample of public tweets from a five-month period from December 2014 to April 2015,” Twitter said in a statement to Bloomberg. “Based on the recent reports, we conducted our own internal review and did not find any access to private data about people who use Twitter.”

Twitter has removed Cambridge Analytica’s data access and advertising ID. The company has provided access to public data for certain companies using an API. The company sells the data to organizations which are often used for sentiment analysis. While Enterprise customers are given access to a wide range of data which consists of tweets dating as far back as 2006. To get an access at that scale the companies must explain how they are using the customer’s data.

Facebook is under scrutiny because it failed to protect the user’s data, while Twitter doesn’t sell private messaging data and users must provide an express consent to provide the location stamp with the Tweet.

Around 270,00 people used Kogan’s personality quiz application, which shared the personal information about their friends and illegally passed the data to Cambridge Analytica.

The company has removed 142,000 applications that have access to Twitter’s platform who are allegedly collecting data for political consulting.

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