On Monday, we found out about some of Cambridge Analytica’s more unsavory practices, such as bribery of politicians, or attempts to set “honey traps” – that is, to send Ukrainian hookers to entice and set-up their targeted politicians or officials.
The data mining firm has been under scrutiny since a report last week said that they’d “stolen” personal data from over 50 million Facebook users, in an effort to target voters in the 2016 election.
The Monday video was part of a documentary report on the firm, with undercover video of Cambridge Analytica CEO, Alexander Nix, discussing the bribery and aforementioned “honey traps.”
So, no. They can’t deny it.
In a related bit of news, Nix has been suspended by the board of the company, because of that video.
In a continuation of the report by Britain’s Channel 4 News, they explore how the company implemented their particular brand of shady in helping the Trump campaign.
An executive at the company talked about how their work contributed to Trump’s win of “40,000 votes” in three states, Channel 4 News reported, according to an undercover investigation.
“We did all the research, all the data, all the analytics, all the targeting, we ran all the digital campaign, the television campaign and our data informed all the strategy,” said CEO Alexander Nix, regarding Cambridge Analytica’s work for Trump.
Earlier Tuesday, Team Trump attempted to put distance between themselves and Cambridge Analytica, but when Steve Bannon is as deeply involved with the company as it has been reported he was (He was cited as a de facto “founder” of the company, in the video.), then it’s harder to believe they weren’t involved with Trump’s campaign than not.
Also, the managing director of the company’s political division, Mark Turnbull, discussed the use of “proxy organizations.”
“You feed them. They are civil society organizations,” he said.
“Charities or activist groups, and we use them — feed them the material and they do the work.”
“We just put information into the bloodstream to the internet and then watch it grow, give it a little push every now and again over time to watch it take shape. And so this stuff infiltrates the online community and expands but with no branding – so it’s unattributable, untrackable.”
We’ve seen that happen with conspiracy theories and other such nonsense.
And “Defeat Crooked Hillary”?
Yeah. That was them, according to Turnbull, and it was funded by Make America 1 super-PAC.
It didn’t stop there. According to what Nix boasted about on the video, there were no paper trails.
“No one knows we have it, and secondly we set our … emails with a self-destruct timer … So you send them and after they’ve been read, two hours later, they disappear. There’s no evidence, there’s no paper trail, there’s nothing,” he said, according to the publication.
That’s really a thing?
It all seems pretty sketchy. I mean, data mining, itself, is apparently something that is not new. The fact that they’re going to such lengths to cover their tracks would suggest that this is something more.
On a side note, Facebook’s involvement with Cambridge Analytica is taking a toll. Shares of Facebook stock began a steady tick downwards since the report first came to light.
As of Tuesday afternoon, Facebook shares were down 5.7 percent.