Cambridge Analytica ceases operations
Representatives for Cambridge Analytica have sent out a press release confirming that the company is ceasing all operations. The data-mining consultancy firm has been at the center of the Facebook data breach controversy, which involved the collection and sharing of personal information from around 87 million Facebook users. The company has closed offices in the UK and USA, and it has started filing the appropriate insolvency paperwork in both countries. The press release was bullish in defense of the company’s activities:
Over the past several months, Cambridge Analytica has been the subject of numerous unfounded accusations and, despite the Company’s efforts to correct the record, has been vilified for activities that are not only legal, but also widely accepted as a standard component of online advertising in both the political and commercial arenas.
Regardless of the levels of accountability the company could assume, the scandal has hit Cambridge Analytica severely, as the press release points out:
The siege of media coverage has driven away virtually all of the Company’s customers and suppliers.
The closure of Cambridge Analytica and its parent company SCL Group certainly does not herald the end of the investigation into the issue of how personal data was handled. The UK’s Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) has already stated plans to keep examining the affair and "pursue individuals and directors as appropriate and necessary even where companies may no longer be operating."