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Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey posted a link to the New York Times article on Twitter, saying: "Massachusetts residents deserve answers immediately from Facebook and Cambridge Analytica".

Facebook announced on Saturday that it had suspended the data research firm Cambridge Analytica for holding onto dubiously obtained user data after assuring the social media firm that the information had been deleted.

Cambridge Analytica specializes in using online data to create voter personality profiles in order to target users with political messages and ran data operations for Donald Trump's presidential campaign.

The newspapers, which cited former Cambridge Analytica employees, associates and documents, said the data breach was one of the largest in the history of Facebook Inc. But what Facebook didn't say may be more important: The number of people affected by this aggressive form of data grabbing likely numbered in the tens of millions. Good. But also remember that Facebook built its entire business model on vacuuming up as much intimate information about all of us as possible and then selling it to advertisers.

It is also at the centre of a growing controversy over the use of personal data to influence the Brexit vote in the United Kingdom and Donald Trump's election.

Facebook first learned of the privacy and data retention policy violations in 2015 and had required that all involved give assurances that they would delete the harvested data.

Facebook said in a blog post Friday that Cambridge Analytica got some user data through an app developer on its social network, violating its policies.

Facebook's announcement on Friday focused on how people affiliated with Cambridge Analytica had violated policies of the social media platform.

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For the firm's leaders, including board member and later Trump adviser Steve Bannon, it was all about doing battle against their political enemies.

Wylie provided The Observer with a dossier of evidence illustrating Cambridge Analytica's misuse of the data, including emails, invoices, contracts, and bank transfers that point to the scope of the breach.

Cambridge Analytica, the U.S. unit of British behavioral marketing firm SCL, rose to prominence as the firm that the pro-Brexit group Leave.EU hired for data-gathering and audience-targeting.

Cambridge Analytica worked for the failed presidential campaign of US Senator Ted Cruz and then for the presidential campaign of Donald Trump. The company claims to build psychological profiles based on personal details from millions of Americans that can categorize individual voters. Cambridge Analytica - including Strategic Communication Laboratories - and Kogan and Wylie have been suspended, "pending further information".

Meanwhile, the Trump campaign paid Cambridge Analytica $5 million to help target voters.

"Cambridge Analytica was supposed to be the arsenal of weapons to fight that culture war", Wylie says in an article appearing in the New York Times on the growing controversy.

Facebook said that Mr Kogan gained access to profile and other information "in a legitimate way" but "he did not subsequently abide by our rules" when he passed the data to SCL/Cambridge Analytica and Christopher Wylie of Eunoia Technologies.

"Several days ago, we received reports that, contrary to the certifications we were given, not all data was deleted".


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