Cambridge Analytica, the political analysis firm at the center of the Facebook data scandal, is a bad example of modern day colonialism, whistleblower Christopher Wylie said at a U.K. parliamentary hearing on Tuesday.
Citing the company's work in support of Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta's disputed re-elections, the former Cambridge Analytica employee said: "This is a company that goes around the world and undermines civic institutions of, you know, countries that are struggling to develop those institutions."
"They are an example of what modern day colonialism looks like. You have a wealthy company from a developed nation going into an economy or democracy that is still struggling to get, you know, its feet on the ground and taking advantage of that to profit from that," he added.
Cambridge Analytica is in the midst of a dispute after an undercover sting operation caught senior executives boasting about psychological manipulation, entrapment techniques and fake news campaigns. The company's CEO has been suspended and the U.K.'s Information Commissioner has raided its London office.
It is alleged to have used data gathered from Facebook users via a third party app to influence votes, including in the U.S. presidential election and the Brexit referendum, both in 2016. Cambridge Analytica has said that it was "committed to being responsible, fair and secure with data."