Facebook executive grilled by MPs after Parliament seizes data scandal documents

29 November, 2018, 00:17 | Author: Gregory Stephens
  • Facebook faces fresh scrutiny this week from an international panel of lawmakers. Reuters

The firm is involved in court action against Facebook in the USA, where the documents were obtained through legal mechanisms.

In what appears to be an unprecedented move, the United Kingdom parliament just gained access to documents one MP alleges have crucial information regarding the relationship between Facebook and data firm Cambridge Analytica. Furthermore, The Observer reported that, "they include confidential emails between senior executives, and correspondence with [Mark] Zuckerberg." .

Kramer reportedly was escorted to Parliament after a sergeant-at-arms appeared at Kramer's London hotel and was threatened with fines and possible imprisonment, according to The Guardian's The Observer.

He criticised Facebook's lack of cooperation with his committee, and said the "documents contained answers to some of the questions we have been seeking about the use of data, especially by external developers".

But do not underestimate the MP's determination to show a global social media giant that it is not above local laws.

What happened? Damian Collins, the chair of the select committeee on culture, media, and sport, invoked Parliament's summoning rights to force Ted Kramer, founder of the United States software firm Six4Three, to release the documents.


'We have very serious questions for Facebook.

"We are in uncharted territory".

Taking on the American courts, using arcane procedures that have not been employed in living memory and getting involved in a case where a plaintiff seems to be arguing that Facebook was too strict about the use of data certainly seems risky.

The seizure follows Zuckerberg's refusal to answer the Parliament's summons, and The Guardian believes that the documents will clarify the decisions made by Facebook's leadership in the events leading up to the scandal.

Allan pleaded with Collins not to raise the material at the hearing, which MPs are entitled to do under Parliamentary privilege, "until we have further guidance from the court". It claims that Facebook gave developers access to users' data...

Richard Allan, Facebook's vice-president for policy who is set to testify before Parliament after Zuckerberg declined to attend, stated that Facebook takes its responsibility around: "a number of important issues around privacy, safety and democracy ... very seriously".

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