Cambridge Analytica said Monday whistleblower Christopher Wylie is "misrepresenting himself and the company" in weekend reports alleging massive mishandling of Facebook user data.
"The company's detailed responses to their questions ahead of publication were largely ignored in their subsequent reporting. Their source is a former contractor for Cambridge Analytica – not a founder as has been claimed – who left in 2014," the company said. Wylie did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
The research firm with ties to Donald Trump and his presidential campaign allegedly gained access to data from 50 million Facebook profiles collected by Aleksandr Kogan through a psychology test quiz.
Cambridge Analytica has maintained since Friday, when Facebook first said it was suspending the research firm from its platform, that it did not gain access to data from Kogan and that the Facebook data it did gain access to was not used for the Trump campaign.
It also said the data has since been deleted, which weekend reports contradicted. Facebook said Monday it was hiring a firm to audit Cambridge Analytica, Wylie and Kogan and to determine if the data still exists.
Wylie and his attorney Tamsin Allen did not immediately respond to request for comment.
Cambridge Analytica strongly denies the claims recently made by the New York Times, the Guardian and Channel 4 News.
The company's detailed responses to their questions ahead of publication were largely ignored in their subsequent reporting. Their source is a former contractor for Cambridge Analytica – not a founder as has been claimed – who left in 2014 and is misrepresenting himself and the company throughout his comments.
In 2014 we received Facebook data and derivatives of Facebook data from another company, GSR, that we engaged in good faith to legally supply data for research. After it subsequently became known that GSR had broken its contract with Cambridge Analytica because it had not adhered to data protection regulation, Cambridge Analytica deleted all the Facebook data and derivatives, in cooperation with Facebook.
This Facebook data was not used by Cambridge Analytica as part of the services it provided to the Donald Trump presidential campaign; personality targeted advertising was not carried out for this client either. The company has made this clear since 2016.
Cambridge Analytica and its affiliates work with commercial brands and mainstream political parties in democratic elections. We did not work on the Brexit referendum in the UK.