Cambridge Analytica files for bankruptcy in the US after Facebook privacy row

 
Rebecca Smith
Cambridge Analytica has been involved in a privacy storm with Facebook
Cambridge Analytica has been involved in a privacy storm with Facebook (Source: Getty)

Cambridge Analytica, the company at the centre of the Facebook storm over privacy, has filed for voluntary Chapter 7 bankruptcy in New York.

The UK political consulting company voluntarily submitted a petition to declare bankruptcy at the US Bankruptcy Court Southern District of New York late last night.

Cambridge Analytica had been under fire after allegations it misused the personal data of millions of people from Facebook and tried to use it to influence votes in the US election.

Read more: Cambridge Analytica's Alexander Nix to appear before MPs on 6 June

The company had said earlier this month that they planned to shut down immediately and begin bankruptcy proceedings after a steep drop off in business.

On 2 May, a statement uploaded on its website said Cambridge Analytica was "immediately ceasing all operations", with the boards appointing insolvency practitioners Crowe Clark Whitehill LLP to act as the independent administrator.

"Over the past several months, Cambridge Analytica has been the subject of numerous unfounded accusations and, despite the company’s efforts to correct the record, has been vilified for activities that are not only legal, but also widely accepted as a standard component of online advertising in both the political and commercial arenas," it said in the statement.

The company said "the siege of media coverage" had driven away "virtually all" of its customers and suppliers, and as a result it was no longer viable to continue operating the business.

In April, Facebook's chief technical officer Mark Schroepfer gave evidence to MPs on the Cambridge Analytica scandal, but the government has also called for founder Mark Zuckerberg to come forward. He has agreed to give evidence to the European Parliament, but had rejected requests from UK MPs to face questions.

He has attended two sessions in the US Congress too.

President of the European Parliament Antonio Tajani said: "Our citizens deserve a full and detailed explanation. I welcome Mark Zuckerberg's decision to appear in person before the representatives of 500m Europeans. It is a step in the right direction towards restoring confidence."

Read more: Cambridge Analytica shuts down in wake of Facebook data scandal

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