LONDON, 26th Sept. 2020— The boss of Cambridge Analytica has been banned from holding company directorships for seven years effective from 5 October 2020 over a scandal on Facebook users’ private data theft.
Britain’s Insolvency Service banned Alexander Nix from running companies after he permitted Cambridge Analytica’s parent firm, SCL Elections Ltd., and connected firms to “market themselves as offering potentially unethical services to prospective clients.”
U.K.-based Cambridge Analytica was accused of playing a key role in the 2014 breach of 87 million Facebook users’ personal data. The company denied it used the data for Trump’s 2016 election campaign, but some former employees have disputed that. Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg has said that it was “entirely possible” the social media data ended up being used in Russian propaganda efforts.
Cambridge Analytica and other connected firms under Nix’s leadership filed for bankruptcy in 2018.
A statement by the service mentioned Alexander Nix was a director of SCL Elections Ltd, a company that provided data analytics, marketing, and communication services to political and commercial customers. He was also a director of five other connected UK companies.
From 2016, SCL Elections Ltd was included in a rebranding of associated companies which then operated under the trading names Cambridge Analytica, CA Political (Global) and CA Commercial.
SCL Elections and the five connected companies, however, ceased trading following allegations in the UK and United States media which created substantial adverse publicity.
The unethical services offered by the companies included bribery or honey trap stings, voter disengagement campaigns, obtaining information to discredit political opponents and spreading information anonymously in political campaigns.