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Facebook executive grilled by MPs after Parliament seizes data scandal documents

28 November 2018

However, the Guardian is reporting that Parliament has now grown more aggressive, having used its legal powers to seize internal Facebook documents in what the paper describes as an "extraordinary attempt to hold the USA social media giant to account".

The committee has previously questioned whistle blowers and senior officials at Cambridge Analytica, the company that harvested data from millions of Facebook profiles without the consent of the users as part of attempts to predict voter behaviour.

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.

Britain's parliament has seized confidential Facebook documents from the developer of a now-defunct bikini photo searching app as it seeks answers from the social media company about its data protection policies.

MP Damian Collins later told the BBC that he trusted the reports were "exceptionally pertinent" to his request. This is an unprecedented move but it's an unprecedented situation.

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".

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Collins said: "We have very serious questions for Facebook".

The documents, which had been turned over to Ted Kramer, the owner of Six4Three, a company suing Facebook for privacy data abuse, were shared with Kramer's lawyers through the legal process of discovery, where a party of a lawsuit can obtain evidence from the other.

The app maker, Six4Three, had acquired the files as part of a US lawsuit against the social media giant.

A Facebook spokesperson said Six4Three's claims had "no merit, and we will continue to defend ourselves vigorously". He said the document indicates a Facebook engineer notified his superiors in October 2014 that "entities with Russian IP addresses" were pulling more than 3 billion data points a day from Facebook.

The British parliament's seizure of the documents comes after Zuckerberg declined to appear before an worldwide coalition of elected officials investigating disinformation and election interference that is scheduled to meet in London on Tuesday. The committee wanted the files, which have been sealed by a California judge, in the hope they would shed light on Facebook's privacy policies.

Facebook executive grilled by MPs after Parliament seizes data scandal documents