‘Facebook blocks apps from analytics company and investigates contracts’

Facebook has temporarily removed the apps of the American analytics company Crimson Hexagon from its platform and has launched an investigation into the company’s contracts. Facebook did that after questions from The Wall Street Journal.

The newspaper writes that Facebook is investigating whether the contracts of the analytics company violate its terms. Crimson Hexagon claims to have one of the largest databases of social media posts with a total size of approximately one trillion posts. They would also come from Twitter and Instagram, among others. According to newspaper sources, the company has contracts with several US government agencies and with a Russian non-profit organization with ties to the Kremlin.

After questions from the newspaper about those contracts, Facebook said it is not aware of all the agreements and that it will launch an investigation to find out how the company collects, stores and shares data. A spokesperson for Crimson Hexagon says it does not collect private data from social media or other sources and adheres to its agreements with its partners. The company profiles itself as an ‘ai-powered consumer insights company’.

Access to Facebook data via apps is under tighter scrutiny after it emerged that data company Cambridge Analytica accessed the data of 87 million people through a personality quiz.