SCL Elections, the sister company of Cambridge Analytica, is facing the full force of the UK courts – including an unlimited fine – after refusing to respond to a legal order issued by the UK Information Commissioner’s Office to provide details of the data it holds on an American citizen.
The case centres on US academic Professor David Carroll, who discovered back in 2016 that SCL Elections held a raft of personal data on him. As an American citizen, he had no right to obtain data from the firm under US law, but when he found out the firm had processed US voter data in the UK, this gave him rights under British laws and he issued a subject access request (SAR) to the business back January 2017.
However, on receiving the response to the SAR, Professor Carroll complained to the UK ICO that the firm had not divulged the relevant information. The ICO then wrote to SCL in September 2017, sharing its concerns.
Still, the company refused to address the ICO’s questions, triggering the ICO to issue an Enforcement Notice last month giving the London-based company 30 days to comply. This deadline has now passed without response, and both SCL and Cambridge Analytica have been liquidated.
Speaking in front of the European Parliament’s inquiry into the Facebook/Cambridge Analytica scandal, Professor Carroll said: “We have heard nothing. They are not respecting the law, in my opinion. So that’s very troubling – because they seem to be trying to use liquidation to evade their responsibility as far as we can tell.”