The Cambridge Analytics scandal may have severe repercussions for the future of Facebook.
(CCM) — The co-founder of WhatsApp has launched a campaign urging internet users to stop using Facebook because of the growing Cambridge Analytics scandal.
Brian Acton, who sold the WhatsApp messaging service to Facebook in 2014 for almost $20 billion, has told his 25,000 Twitter followers that: "It is time. #DeleteFacebook."
Cambridge Analytica is alleged to have harvested large amounts of personal data from 50 million Facebook users though a personality quiz on Facebook called This Is Your Digital Life. Only 270,000 people are believed to have done the quiz, suggesting that much of the data was harvested without the explicit consent of tens of millions of people who were friends of those Facebook users who actually took part in the quiz. Yesterday the BBC reported that Cambridge Analytica had suspended Alexander Nix, its chief executive.
Cambridge Analytica is alleged to have used the harvested personal data to deliver pro-Trump messages to them, with the intention of influencing the outcome of the 2016 presidential election, according to the report.
The academic who developed the quiz for Cambridge Analytica says he did not know his work violated Facebook's policies. Facebook has since suspended Cambridge Analytica from the social network, and denied that there had been any data breach. "People knowingly provided their information, no systems were infiltrated, and no passwords or sensitive pieces of information were stolen or hacked," it said last week.
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