Published: Fri, June 08, 2018
Business | By Eloise Houston

Former Cambridge Analytica CEO Nix Grilled By MPs

Former Cambridge Analytica CEO Nix Grilled By MPs

In a heated encounter with the Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee, Nix told MPs: "If you were sitting where I am right now you'd probably feel quite victimised".

And he insisted it was correct for him to say at his previous hearing that CA had no relationship with Canadian data firm AggregateIQ, as it had not worked with them for a period of "many months" at that point. The data was leaked by researcher Alksandr Kogan; after his admission that he did pass on the data to Cambridge Analytica, Nix retracted his version of events to admit his company did receive Facebook-generated data.

The Times said Facebook allowed companies access to the data of users' friends without their explicit consent, even after it had declared it would no longer share the information with outsiders.

"Of course, the answer to this question should have been 'yes, '" Nix was quoted as saying by Reuters, when asked if Cambridge Analytica still held data from the researcher.

Cambridge Analytica played a key role in the Donald Trump presidential campaign and lawmakers on both sides of the Atlantic are conducting investigations into whether the billionaire was elected on the back of information from the social media giant. He admitted he had been foolish and had made exaggerated claims in order to attract what he thought was a potential client.

On other matters, Nix was less apologetic. "All Mr Nix's comments carried in our reports were used in context, including any caveats", the broadcaster said in a statement.

Christopher Wylie, the whistleblower who exposed the relations between Cambridge Analytica and the data firms was, he warned, spreading a damaging and misleading conspiracy theory.

Nix also said he's embarrassed at having been caught on camera boasting that he could entrap political figures by compromising them with bribes and Ukrainian women.

"But you can't simply put forward your prejudices onto me and make sweeping assumptions about our involvement with a political campaign simply because that is what you want to believe..."

The executive at the heart of the Cambridge Analytica scandal rejected claims that he had spirited $8 million (Dh29.3 million) out of the operation in the weeks before its collapse as he revealed on Wednesday that the entire operations of the firm were being wound up. Nix also denied any knowledge of a meeting between the firm's employee and Julian Assange in the Ecuadorian embassy in 2017 which was reported by The Guardian.

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