Home States Delhi Massive data breach: Both Congress-BJP accuses each-other over links with Cambridge Analytica

Massive data breach: Both Congress-BJP accuses each-other over links with Cambridge Analytica

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(G.N.S) Dt. 21
New Delhi
– Ravi Shankar Prasad poses 3 questions to Congress over its alleged links with Cambridge Analytica
– The Election Commission should investigate which party had or has links with disgraced firm Cambridge Analytica: Manish Tewari
– News about Congress engaged/engaging with Cambridge Analytica is absolutely false: Congress party’s social media head Divya Spandana
Union IT Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad today asked the Congress to come clean on its inks with Cambridge Analytica that is in the middle of a huge controversy over a massive data breach and delivered a harsh warning to Facebook as well.
Facebook is facing the heat after Cambridge Analytica, a British consulting company, was accused of harvesting data of up to 50 million Facebook users without permission and using the data to help politicians, including US President Donald Trump and the Brexit campaign. Hours after the Congress’s Manish Tewari said the Election Commission should investigate which party had or has links with disgraced firm Cambridge Analytica, BJP spokesperson Ravi Shankar Prasad alleged that the Congress has links with the data analytics firm.
Ravi Shankar Prasad comes out the queries after reading news reports, which stated that the British company had reached out to Congress with a social media strategy ahead of elections in the country.
Information Technology Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad has alleged that the Congress had liaised with data analytics company Cambridge Analytica, which is in the eye of the storm over misuse of data sourced from Facebook.
Mr. Prasad warned Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg that his company would not be spared if theft of any data of Indians is discovered. “The BJP will take it seriously if by collusive methods, data of Indians is exposed.”
At a press conference in New Delhi on Wednesday, Mr. Prasad posed three questions to the Congress. “Will the Congress party depend on data manipulation and theft to woo voters? Does the Congress endorse the methods used by Cambridge Analytica, namely sex, sleaze and fake news? What is Cambridge Analytica’s role in Rahul Gandhi’s social media profile?”
Mr. Prasad asked these questions after reading out news reports which stated that the British company had reached out to the Congress with a social media strategy ahead of elections in the country.
“Abuse of social media through an agency seeking to compromise data security is the issue,” he said.
Cambridge Analytica (CA) has been in the eye of the storm following an investigation by Britain’s Channel 4 which alleged that the company harvested private data of Facebook users in 2014.
The BJP’s Prasad alleged that the Congress party committed data theft and manipulated data to win elections. He questioned the role of CA in the social media management of Congress and party president Rahul Gandhi.
Much before that though, Tewari tweeted saying the Election Commission “should enquire/recommend (an) investigation (into) what services & to whom they were offering” these services in India.
After Prasad’s allegation, the Congress party’s social media head Divya Spandana also refuted Prasad’s charge. “News about Congress engaged/engaging with Cambridge Analytica is absolutely false,” she tweeted.
Spandana further said the BJP is trying to distract from the controversy over the killing of 30 Indian hostages by ISIS in Iraq.
“Can you @rsprasad please tell us why your Govt lied to us about the 39 Indians who died in Iraq? You hid the information and now you’re trying to divert attention from the issue by making outrageous allegations against the Congress party.,” she further tweeted.
Prasad accused the Congress party of sharing the private data of Indian citizens with CA. “Will the Congress Party now depend upon data manipulation and data theft to win elections?” he asked.
“This is not just a question of Congress Party’s association with a rogue data analysis firm but it is a question of free and fair elections in India and democratic values of our country,” he added.
Prasad also said that though he is in favour of social media, however, its misuse will not be tolerated, especially by foreign firms.
The company, which is known for playing a pivotal role in managing the 2016 presidential campaign of US President Donald Trump, is now facing a government search of its London office, questions from US state authorities, and a demand by Facebook that it submit to a forensic audit.

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