Cambridge Analytica - Facebook: One of the analytics companies that helped Donald Trump win the election gathered private information from 50 million Facebook profiles without their permission.
The story was released at the weekend when Facebook announced late Friday that Cambridge Analytica had no longer access to the social network because it used the data to determine what voter voted in his constituency.
Major news sites such as: The New York Times, Observer the Guardian, and the Channel 4 News of the United Kingdom, showed evidence and documents from a former Cambridge Analytica official who testify to what they claim.
The New York Times referred to the incident as "one of the largest data leaks in the history of the social network", and later described it as a "violation".
Although most US states have laws requiring businesses to report data breaches directly, Facebook is not reported to have informed any regulator of this data leak.
Facebook general advisor, Paul Grewal, said that it would be "completely false" to call the incident a "data breach". Carole Cadwalladr, who co-authored the Guardian article, he said in a tweet that Facebook threatened to sue the newspaper, saying it was "false and defamatory" to call the incident a data breach.
Grewal said Facebook learned earlier this week that Cambridge Analytica, based in London, was used for Strategic Communication Laboratories (SCL) Strategic Targeting Strategies for Personalized Political Messaging, and has abused the data collected by 270.000 Facebook users. This data (Facebook profile names, locations, information from friends, and the content they liked) was collected from a supposedly well-intentioned personality prediction application developed by Aleksandr Kogan, a Russian American researcher and lecturer at the University of Cambridge.
This application data was provided by Kogan to Cambridge Analytica without user permission, violating Facebook's policies.
Facebook said it was the first time 2015 had learned.
Instead of alerting users that their personal data had been circumvented, Facebook asked 2016 in August with a letter from Kogan and Cambridge Analytica to erase the data.
The letter was sent just a few days before Trump recruited Steve Bannon, a former Vice President of Cambridge Analytica, to run the election campaign.
Although Facebook stated that it had received assurances that the data had been deleted, the company did not verify the responses it received.
"Several days ago, we received reports that despite the certifications we were given, not all the data was deleted," Grewal said. Facebook also suspended the operation of SCL and Cambridge Analytica's page as mentioned above on the social network.
Facebook's statement was published just a few hours before news release on Saturday.
"We are committed to strictly enforcing our policies to protect our members' information," Grewal told Facebook.
All of this is the final touch in an ongoing story about what happened before and during the US presidential election of 2016.
Head of Information Services said in January that the Russian government used social networks to disseminate information during the election to help Trump beat the candidate Hillary Clinton.
Many technology companies, such as Twitter and Google, have criticized their failure to limit the spread of "false news" on their platforms, allowing Russians to buy ads to spread misinformation from their platforms.