Facebook has recently revealed that a whopping 87 million (and not just 50 million as per earlier reports) of their users’ data were indeed stolen by political research firm Cambridge Analytica. And apparently, 1.4 percent of those FB users—the second highest from their list—are from the Philippines.
Upon receiving the report, the National Privacy Commission (NPC) had a meeting with local Facebook representatives to know the extent of the damage that has been done to pinoy FB users.
In an interview with The Philippine Star, NPC commissioner Raymund Liboro explained how the Cambridge Analytica was able to steal data from Filipinos. “Facebook told the NPC that 558 Filipino users installed Aleksandr Kogan’s personality quiz app, ‘This is Your Digital Life,’ through which personal data may have been improperly shared with Cambridge Analytica.”
He added, “From this, 1,175,312 more Filipinos may have been subsequently affected via sharing, making the Philippines the second most affected country in terms of total number of data subjects.”
There’s still no confirmation over what happened to the data harvested by Cambridge Analytica from the country. However, recent reports suggest that the data might have also been used during the 2016 Philippine elections.
“The parent company website of Cambridge Analytica, Strategic Communication Laboratories, or SCL Group, shows it has 13 offices worldwide—Including the Philippines,” Rappler revealed in an article. "The firm that helped Donald Trump win the US elections also used Filipinos' data to help Rodrigo Duterte win in the Philippines."
This story originally appeared on Fhm.com.ph.
* Minor edits have been made by the Esquiremag.ph editors.