Turns out there is a couple between Peter Thiel’s sly vast information analytics firm, Palantir, and Cambridge Analytica — a domestic consulting organisation during a core of a stream Facebook information injustice scandal.
Facebook responds to information misuse
Starting in 2013, a New York Times reports that a UK-based Palantir worker worked with Cambridge Analytica — going on to benefit entrance to a dataset of 50M+ Facebook users a latter organisation performed in 2014 around a third celebration celebrity ask app deployed on a amicable network giant’s platform.
In testimony to a UK council yesterday, CA whistleblower Chris Wylie told MPs that comparison Palantir employees worked with a organisation on a Facebook information to assistance it build models off of a dataset to use for domestic ad targeting purposes.
At a time Wylie worked for SCL Group, a UK invulnerability executive that went on to form CA with appropriation from US billionaire, Robert Mercer. CA was after intent by a Trump campaign, for a 2016 presidential election.
Reached yesterday for a response to Wylie’s allegations, a Palantir mouthpiece flatly denied Wylie’s explain — revelation us: “Palantir has never had a attribute with Cambridge Analytica nor have we ever worked on any Cambridge Analytica data.”
However in a matter to a NYT, Palantir has now mutated this line — saying: “We schooled currently that an employee, in 2013-2014, intent in an wholly personal ability with people compared with Cambridge Analytica. We are looking into this and will take a suitable action.”
The NYT reports it has seen papers display that a London-based worker of a vast information organisation — named as Alfredas Chmieliauskas — worked with a CA information scientists who were building a psychological profiling technology.
The papers were presumably supposing by Wylie (pictured below), who has also handed email and other documentary justification to a DCMS cabinet questioning online disinformation in domestic campaigning, as good as to a UK’s information watchdog and Electoral Commission — both of that are also probing digital domestic campaigning issues (including around a UK’s 2016 Brexit referendum vote, that Wylie alleges CA also worked on).
According to a NYT report, it was indeed Chmieliauskas who came adult with a thought for cloning a work of Michal Kosinski, the initial Cambridge University educational that Wylie says CA approached for assistance to accumulate data.
Kosinski was emissary executive during Cambridge University’s Psychometrics Centre during a time and, along with another highbrow during a department, David Stillwell, had already worked on a project drawing links between anonymized Facebook profiles and responses from celebrity surveys — with that information also performed around a Facebook app — aiming to bond interests with voting tendencies.
Yesterday Wylie told a cabinet that Kosinski had asked for $500k adult front from CA and 50% equity in a blurb try to work on a plan — that he pronounced was eventually since it finished adult signing a information chartering understanding with another Cambridge professor, Aleksandr Kogan, who concluded to work initial on entertainment a Facebook information and to plead blurb terms later.
“I had left margin idea,” Chmieliauskas wrote in May 2014, a NYT reports. “What about replicating a work of a cambridge prof as a mobile app that connects to facebook?” — going on to advise this “could be a profitable precedence negotiating with a guy”.
Chmieliauskas’ LinkedIn form states that he assimilated Palantir in Apr 2013 and stays employed during a association in London — operative on “business development”.
It also includes a goal statement: “i repair or mangle vast things”.
In a event, Chmieliauskas’ idea to clone Kosinski’s app led to CA’s information chartering attribute with Kogan, whose possess celebrity exam app — thisisyourdigitallife — was built bespoke for a plan and successfully used to collect information on 50M+ Facebook users so CA could, in turn, build psychological profiles on millions of American voters.
Wylie told a cabinet yesterday that a commander of Kogan’s ask app was launched in May 2014 with 10,000 Facebook users, before grave contracts were sealed between CA and GSR — GSR being a association Kogan set adult to commercialize a work with CA.
The app afterwards was used to collect a full Facebook dataset over a summer of 2014, garnering ~270,000 downloads — though means to lift distant some-more information around Facebook’s (now shuttered) friends API.
Yesterday Wylie also claimed CA was means to lift information on “substantially” some-more Facebook users than even a 50M users that’s been reported so far.
Returning to Palantir, according to a NYT there were also discussions between SCL and Thiel’s organisation in 2013 about operative together on choosing campaigns. The journal pronounced a Palantir spokeswoman reliable a companies had quickly deliberate operative together though claimed it had declined a partnership — in partial since executives wanted to drive transparent of choosing work.
Further emails seen by a NYT uncover CA’s (now suspended) CEO Alexander Nix and Palantir’s Chmieliauskas also sought to revitalise talks about a grave partnership in early 2014 — though Palantir executives again declined.
We reached out to Palantir for acknowledgment and a mouthpiece sent a updated matter (below) — following what she described as an “initial investigation”.
Palantir has never had a attribute with Cambridge Analytica. We were approached by people from Cambridge Analytica on mixed occasions, though we declined to pierce forward. As a matter of association policy, we do not and have never worked on or been concerned with elections or domestic campaigns anywhere in a world. We schooled currently that an employee, in 2013-2014, intent in an wholly personal ability with people compared with Cambridge Analytica. We are looking into this and will take a suitable action.