Facebook researcher tied to Cambridge Analytica quits

San Francisco, Sep 7: After becoming infamous for helping the controversial British political consultancy firm Cambridge Analytica harvest tens of millions of Facebook users’ profiles, a psychology researcher with the social networking giant has left the company, the media reported.

A Facebook spokesperson declined to explain when or why the researcher, Joseph Chancellor, had left the company, or to detail the results of any investigation into his work, Fast Company reported on Thursday.

Before leaving Facebook, Chancellor worked as a quantitative researcher on its User Experience Research team.

I can confirm that Joseph Chancellor is no longer employed by Facebook, and we wish him all the best, a Facebook spokesperson was quoted as saying.

Although Cambridge University lecturer Aleksander Kogan became a focus of the Cambridge Analytica data leak scandal as he officially led the data harvest, Kogan said he did everything with Chancellor, the report said.

The two were co-founders of Global Science Research, or GSR, the company that Cambridge Analytica hired to gather the user data and analyse it for psychological traits, it added.

Facebook has been under the scanner of lawmakers around the world ever since the Cambridge Analytica data leak scandal became public.

Appearing before the US Congress in April, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg Zuckerberg told the lawmakers that his own personal data was part of 87 million users’ that was improperly shared with the British political consultancy firm.

The data was gathered via a quiz app, thisisyourdigitallife, developed by Kogan, then a psychology researcher with University of Cambridge, and his company GSR which pulled out Facebook users’ data in 2014-2015.

Facebook continues to face tough questions from lawmakers about Chancellor, although he was not mentioned on Wednesday, when Senators questioned Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg at a hearing on Capitol Hill, the Fast Company report said.

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