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Whistleblower Christopher Wylie had some harsh phrases for his former employer Cambridge Analytica earlier than a British parliamentary committee on Tuesday — delivered alongside new accusations in regards to the practices of a small Canadian company called AggregateIQ. The Victoria-primarily based firm has been linked to an alleged scheme to sidestep Brexit campaign spending limits with the intention to affect the outcome of the vote.

But Wylie's testimony, taken along with paperwork obtained by CBC News, reveal a a lot wider range of political work for purchasers across the globe — at times, involving strategies that Wylie said do not sit nicely with him. Who or what is AggregateIQ? The company says it's in the business of online advertising and software development. Principally it makes digital tools for political campaigns.

Of course, a lot of companies could fall underneath that description — but it is the strategies that AggregateIQ is alleged to have used, and the high-profile shoppers the company has worked with, that makes it no run-of-the-mill political consultancy. What's its reference to Cambridge Analytica? In keeping with Wylie, AggregateIQ was set up to do work for an organization referred to as SCL, the mother or father company of Cambridge Analytica. Wylie pitched Silvester on moving to London to work for SCL, but Silvester wished to stay in Victoria.

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  • And thus AggregateIQ was born. From 2013 by way of 2016, the company did work for SCL — though, Silvester says, not for Cambridge Analytica. Wylie says SCL described AggregateIQ as its Canadian workplace, however Silvester disputes that characterization. What about all that Facebook person knowledge that was shared with Cambridge Analytica? Nonetheless, it isn't clear that AIQ ever had direct entry to the raw Fb information itself.

    In a March 24 update to its website, this a part of the assertion was eliminated. Cambridge Analytica, for its part, informed Reuters it had not shared any of the Facebook profile knowledge with AggregateIQ. Then what sort of information did AggregateIQ have entry to? The company's first contract with SCL was in 2013, for political work in Trinidad and Tobago with the nation's Congress of the Folks party.

    AIQ's job was to create a constituent relationship administration system, or CRM, which would enable the occasion to manage and communicate with its supporters. 200,000 US, and it laid the groundwork for AIQ's subsequent huge undertaking with SCL: the creation of the Ripon platform. Named after the city in Wisconsin where the Republican occasion was founded, Wylie has described Ripon as the software that built-in Cambridge Analytica's psychographic algorithms with online advertising platforms for political campaigns.

    In different words, it is what let political groups target customers with advertisements that were tailor-made to their particular character traits. Work on Ripon started in 2014, constructing on its efforts in Trinidad and Tobago. 575,000 Cdn obtained by CBC Information outlines the creation of a system to help political campaigns co-ordinate canvassing activities, measure the performance of volunteers, and an in depth outreach management system for all the pieces from robocalls and emails to targeted ads online. What did they use it for? We know that Ripon was used for Ted Cruz's 2016 presidential marketing campaign, and for Greg Abbott's successful 2014 bid to change into governor of Texas. AIQ-developed apps for both campaigns can nonetheless be found in the Apple and Google app stores.

    Though there is a few debate as to whether or not the software truly labored as promised, nothing about it was illegal on its face. That does not sound too unusual. Why is that this company in hot water? For that, we flip to Brexit — maybe the highest profile marketing campaign to contain AIQ. We all know that the company helped campaigns on the Leave side of the EU referendum — notably Vote Leave and BeLeave — goal U.K.

    But there are allegations that the two campaigns worked collectively to sidestep campaign spending guidelines in an effort to sway the outcome of the vote, and used AIQ to do it. Whistleblower Shahmir Sanni advised CBC News that Vote Leave and BeLeave — though they maintained they had been separate, and had their own separate spending caps — actually co-ordinated to spend greater than legally allowed on advertising services from AIQ. Co-ordinating campaigns are presupposed to share a single spending cap.

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