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1-min read

Meet Chris Wylie, High School Dropout Who Blew the Lid Off Cambridge Analytica

At the age of 16, Wylie dropped out of high school without any qualification and in a year, started working for Canadian politician Michael Ignateiff. Wylie taught himself how to code at the age of 19 and by 20, he had enrolled as a law student at London School of Economics (LSE).

Uday Singh Rana | News18.com@UdaySRana

Updated:March 27, 2018, 9:12 PM IST
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Meet Chris Wylie, High School Dropout Who Blew the Lid Off Cambridge Analytica
Cambridge Analytica whistleblower Christopher Wylie at a news conference in central London, Britain. (Reuters)
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New Delhi: The Cambridge Analytica (CA) scandal has caused ripples across the global political spectrum from the United States and Britain to India. The story picked up in India after it emerged that both BJP and Congress may have been clients of the dubious data firm. But the man behind this massive leak is 28-year-old whistleblower Christopher Wylie.

Born to physicians, Wylie was raised in British Columbia, Canada. At the age of 16, he dropped out of high school without any qualification and in a year, started working for Canadian politician Michael Ignateiff. Wylie taught himself how to code at the age of 19 and by 20, he had enrolled as a law student at London School of Economics (LSE).

It was his political connections that got him in touch with Strategic Communication Laboratories Group (SCL).

An SCL subsidiary, SCL Elections, would in 2013 go on to form Cambridge Analytica with Wylie’s help. In 2018, he became a whistleblower and gave documents to The Guardian that showed CA was collecting user data to create racial and ethnic profiles, which would then be used to influence voters before elections. This data was collected unethically, without user consent.

On Tuesday, Wylie testified before the UK Parliament and gave further details of CA’s functioning, including their operations in India.

“I believe their client was Congress (in India) but I know that they have done all kinds of projects, both regional – I don’t remember a national project but I know regionally,” he said, adding, ““India is so big that one state can be as big as Britain. But they do have offices there, they do have staff there.”

(Get detailed and live results of each and every seat in the Lok Sabha elections and state Assembly elections in Andhra Pradesh, Odisha, Arunachal Pradesh and Sikkim to know which candidate/party is leading or trailing and to know who has won and who has lost and by what margin. Our one-of-its-kind Election Analytics Centre lets you don a psephologist’s hat and turn into an election expert. Know interesting facts and trivia about the elections and see our informative graphics. Elections = News18)
| Edited by: Sanchari Chatterjee
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