New Delhi: Congress president Rahul Gandhi on Sunday accused the Prime Minister of data breach via his official Narendra Modi app, taking forward the war of words between the Congress and BJP over the Facebook data mining scandal.
“Hi! My name is Narendra Modi. I am India's Prime Minister. When you sign up for my official App, I give all your data to my friends in American companies,” Gandhi tweeted.
Hi! My name is Narendra Modi. I am India's Prime Minister. When you sign up for my official App, I give all your data to my friends in American companies. Ps. Thanks mainstream media, you're doing a great job of burying this critical story, as always.https://t.co/IZYzkuH1ZH— Rahul Gandhi (@RahulGandhi) March 25, 2018
Hitting back at Gandhi, Union Minister KJ Alphons said, “I filled up to 10 pages for a US visa form. We have absolutely no problem giving our fingerprints and being naked before the white man at all. When your own government asks for your name and address, there is a massive revolution saying it's intrusion of privacy.”
I filled up to 10 pages for US Visa form. We have absolutely no problem giving our fingerprints&getting body naked before the white man at all. When your own govt asks for your name&address there is a massive revolution saying it's intrusion in privacy: Union Minister KJ Alphons pic.twitter.com/PymtYRlvI1— ANI (@ANI) March 25, 2018
The BJP accused Rahul Gandhi and his party to have "zero knowledge of technology".
Countering Rahul's charge of data theft by the Narendra Modi app, BJP said the App, unlike most Apps, gives access to users in ‘guest mode’.
Here is BJP's defence by way of tweets:
Rahul Gandhi truly shows why he and his party have zero knowledge of technology. All they can do is scare the masses about technology while they continue to steal data using his ‘Brahmastra’ of Cambridge Analytica.— BJP (@BJP4India) March 25, 2018
We all know that Rahul Gandhi is no match for Narendra Modi. But seeing his fright about the Namo App, is very amusing. When his bots tried to trend #DeleteNamoApp day before yesterday, the popularity and downloads of Namo App only increased. Today, it will be no different! pic.twitter.com/Wnan0IQFIV— BJP (@BJP4India) March 25, 2018
Narendra Modi App is a unique App, which unlike most Apps, gives access to users in ‘guest mode’ without even any permission or data. The permissions required are all contextual and cause-specific.— BJP (@BJP4India) March 25, 2018
Contrary to Rahul’s lies, fact is that data is being used for only analytics using third party service, similar to Google Analytics. Analytics on the user data is done for offering users the most contextual content.— BJP (@BJP4India) March 25, 2018
Gandhi's tweet was referring to a claim by French researcher Elliot Alderson, who alleged that information of those who have downloaded the app was being provided to third party US company Clever Tap without the users’ consent.
The claim has escalated the slugfest between the BJP and the Congress that have accused each other of using the services of Cambridge Analytica, the UK-based company at the heart of the Facebook data mining scandal.
The BJP has alleged that Gandhi used the firm to influence Gujarat elections, while the Congress has rubbished the charge and asked if the government would lodge an FIR against Cambridge Analytica and its India partner Oveleno Business Intelligence (OBI).
Gandhi had accused the Modi government of seeking to divert attention from its past "lies" about 39 Indians killed in Iraq by “inventing” the data mining charges against the Congress.
"Problem: 39 Indians dead; Government on the mat, caught lying. Solution: Invent story on Congress and data theft. Result: Media networks bite bait; 39 Indians vanish from radar. Problem solved," Gandhi had said.
India has issued a notice to Cambridge Analytica, giving it time till March 31 to name its clients and data source. The firm is also the subject of a similar investigation in the United Kingdom and United States.