Brittany Kaiser, former Cambridge Analytica employee, said while giving testimony to the DCMS select committee that Cambridge Analytica, Eldon Insurance and Big Data Dolphins were storing and using British citizen’s data at a facility in Mississippi at Ole Miss University.
In response to this revelation, The Fair Vote Project immediately sought legal counsel in Mississippi and pursued a preservation order over this data so that the companies in question could not tamper with it.
The Fair Vote Project was recently granted a temporary injunction and prepares tomorrow to testify in Mississippi in the hope of being granted a permanent injunction. If this injunction is obtained, it could set a precedent and open the door to other cases where individuals can seek to repatriate illegally held data.
The Information Commissioner’s Office has said it strongly supports The Fair Vote Project in its pursuit of this data and that the ICO itself would like to investigate the data in question:
“Preservation and access to this data is of significant importance to the ICO’s current investigation. For this reason, and in light of potential uncertainty as to whether the data will remain preserved beyond the hearing on 5 June 2018, the ICO lends its support to Fair Vote Project’s claim for permanent injunctive relief.”
Dr. Emma Briant, the academic who has brought forward audio recordings of Andy Wigmore (Director of Communications for Leave.EU) suggesting UK citizens’ data was illegally stored in Mississippi, will be giving evidence tomorrow as well. In advance of tomorrow’s session, Damian Collins and the Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee have published Dr. Briant’s primary evidence for all to see as a result only of The Fair Vote Project’s efforts in Mississippi.
Kyle Taylor, Director of the The Fair Vote Project, said “I’m glad to be in Mississippi to testify in this landmark case which could set a new precedent in data protection law. We welcome the support from the ICO and hope to be able to aid them in their investigation into use of personal data and analytics by political campaigns which is unprecedented in its scale. With the ICO’s support and the new evidence released for our case by the DCMS Committee, it is more important than ever that a permanent injunction is obtained and Eldon Insurance is properly and thoroughly investigated.”
The Fair Vote Project was set up to tackle the issue of data misuse, voter manipulation and lack of transparency in elections head-on. We are committed to ensuring the institutions that protect our democratic processes are fit for purpose in a digital age.
The Fair Vote Project took the decision to publish the whistleblower evidence for everyone to see. The evidence we have so far can be seen on our website, because the public deserve to know the truth about what’s happening in our democracy.
See Dr. Briant’s audio recordings here