Title Cambridge Analytica parent firm in £1m 'entrapment bribe' as suspended CEO's 'racist emails' are exposed
Publication Date 2018-03-21
Text A SCANDAL-hit British tech firm offered a £1million bribe to a politician to entrap him while its boss sent racist emails, it is claimed.
Cambridge Analytica's parent company SCL Group carried out a “sting” on Caribbean Lindsay Grant — an opponent of one of its clients in 2010, the Times said.
PA:Press Association Alexander Nix, CEO of Cambridge Analytica, was suspended last night after an undercover expose
It paid for a man to pose as an international property developer who offered Grant $1.7million to support his election campaign in return for land in St Kits & Nevis.
They released footage of the encounter online and Grant lost the election. SCL Group later boasted how it helped wound him "at the most sensitive time" of the campaign, the Times said.
The revelation comes despite claims from suspended Cambridge Analytica boss Alexander Nix that the firm never uses dirty tricks.
He was filmed boasting about using Ukrainian prostitutes as honey-traps to discredit clients' rivals — but the firm said he was just humouring the undercover reporter.
Cambridge Analytica boss Alexander Nix was filmed boasting about using bribes, honey traps and Ukranian sex workers to swing elections
Channel 4 News Channel 4 News exposed Mr Nix for revealing how they could entrap politicians and influence elections
Channel 4 News The firm's boss said 'we could bring some Ukrainians in on holiday with us' as he discussed using honey traps
An internal email sent by Nix, 42, and seen by the paper also referred to two black potential clients as “n*****s”.
The company has already been rocked by claims from a whistleblower that it harvested the personal information of 50 million Facebook users during the 2016 US election.
Eton-educated Nix had boasted that his company had ran "all" of President Trump’s digital campaign, telling the Channel 4 expose: “We did all the research, all the data... our data informed all the strategy.”
The UK information commissioner is seeking a warrant to search Cambridge Analytica's offices.
Getty - Contributor More than 50 million Facebook users may have had their data harvested without their permission
A statement from the company said: "The board of Cambridge Analytica has announced today that it has suspended CEO Alexander Nix with immediate effect, pending a full, independent investigation.
"In the view of the Board, Mr Nix's recent comments secretly recorded by Channel 4 and other allegations do not represent the values or operations of the firm and his suspension reflects the seriousness with which we view this violation."
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Last night a Cambridge Analytica spokesman told Channel 4: “CA has never claimed it won the election for President Trump. This is patently absurd.
"We are proud of the work we did on that campaign, and have spoken in many public forums about what we consider to be our contribution to the campaign.”
Addressing the sex worker allegations, the firm added: “We entirely refute any allegation that Cambridge Analytica or any of its affiliates use entrapment, bribes or so-called ‘honey-traps’ for any purpose whatsoever.
“Cambridge Analytica does not use untrue material for any purpose.”
Facebook whistleblower claims hundreds of millions of users' data may have been harvested A FORMER Facebook employee told The Guardian last night that millions of users may have had their data harvested by third parties because the social media giant “zero” control over the information. Sandy Parakilas, who worked as a Facebook platform operations manager, said a Friends Permission feature left the site with “zero” control or oversight of user information. He said: “Once the data left Facebook servers there was not any control, and there was no insight into what was going on.” Facebook's share price has plummeted with a further £8.5billion wiped off its value on Tuesday adding to a £26.5billion loss on Monday. There are growing calls for Facebook's billionaire boss Mark Zuckerberg to face MPs over the scandal.