Cambridge Analytica Sent Foreign Workers To Work On US Election Campaigns

Cambridge Analytica, the data firm under growing accusations that it misused the Facebook data of up to 50 million user profiles, was accused by a government watchdog group on Monday of violating federal election laws, ABC News reports.

These employees said that their fellow workers were also nervous about breaking US campaign laws, and they added that Cambridge Analytica was providing "potentially inaccurate immigration documents" to their foreign employees who advised Republican campaigns.

Cambridge Analytica is a division of London-based SCL Group (formerly Strategic Communications Laboratories).

In particular, the complaint references a New York Times story documenting an attorney's July 22, 2014 memo to Steve Bannon, GOP donor Rebekah Mercer and Cambridge Analytica chief Alexander Nix warning against foreign involvement in strategy. US regulations say foreign nationals must not "directly or indirectly" participate in the decision-making process of a political campaign, though they can be involved at lower levels. This data was then provided to non-U.S. citizens working for Cambridge who were formulating strategy to win USA political campaigns.

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The Trump campaign paid Cambridge Analytica almost $6 million for services during the 2016 election cycle, according to data from the FEC.

The complaint also cites an undercover investigation from Britain's channel 4 into Cambridge Analytica, where Nix is overheard saying the firm was responsible for handling all of the data, analytics, and targeting of the Trump campaign, and a report in the Washington Post that the firm assigned multiple foreigners to help Republican candidates with strategy and messaging in the 2014 midterm elections.

The complaint names SCL Group Limited CEO Alexander Nix, SCL co-founder Nigel Oakes, data scientist Alexander Tayler, and former employee-turned-whistleblower Christopher Wylie, all said to be non-U.S. citizens.

Levy suggested at the time that as a foreign national, Nix should recuse himself "from substantive management" of clients involved in US elections, according to the complaints.

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