Investigators enter Cambridge Analytica’s London offices

Judge grants search warrant linked to claims of improper harvesting of Facebook data

Facebook data breach: Information Commissioner’s Office enforcement agents enter Cambridge Analytica’s central London offices. Photograph: PA

Facebook data breach: Information Commissioner’s Office enforcement agents enter Cambridge Analytica’s central London offices. Photograph: PA

 

Investigators from Britain’s data watchdog on Friday entered the London offices of the data-analytics firm at the centre of a storm over allegations that it improperly harvested Facebook data to target US voters in the 2016 presidential election.

About 20 officials arrived at the central London offices of Cambridge Analytica soon after a British high-court judge granted a search warrant sought by the Information Commissioner’s Office.

ICO tweet

Elizabeth Denham, the head of the ICO, is seeking access to records and data in the hands of the company amid claims that Facebook data may have been illegally acquired and used for political campaigns. Both Cambridge Analytica and Facebook deny any wrongdoing.

At 8pm on Friday, less than an hour after the warrant was granted by Judge Leonard QC, the officials, some wearing jackets marked “ICO Enforcement”, went up some side stairs at the building, on New Oxford Street, and were seen on the second floor, where Cambridge Analytica has its offices.

Earlier the Information Commission Office tweeted: “ICO granted warrant: We’re pleased with the decision of the judge and we plan to execute the warrant shortly. This is just one part of a larger investigation into the use of personal data for political purposes and we will now need time to collect and consider the evidence.” – Reuters/PA