British Authorities Search Offices of Cambridge Analytica

Steven Hopkins  Twitter                   Firefighters attended the scene of the evacuation on Thursday

Christopher Wylie was a former employee of Cambridge Analytica and blew the whistle on the political consulting firm, accusing it of misusing the personal information from millions of Facebook users to manipulate voters during the 2016 USA election.

After receiving a warrant from a judge, about 18 enforcement agents from the Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) entered the company's London offices at around 8.00 p.m. (2000 GMT) on Friday.

"Our investigators left the premises at about 03.00 a.m.", a spokesman for the data watchdog said on Saturday.

The regulator said it will "consider the evidence before deciding the next steps and coming to any conclusions".

The so-called psychographic modelling techniques, which were built in part with the data harvested from Facebook, underpinned the company's work for then-Republican nominee and US President Donald Trump's campaign in 2016.

The police search carried out on Friday night had been expected. USA lawmakers on Friday had asked Facebook Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg to come to Congress to explain the cause of the breach.

The firm also said it is "now undertaking an independent third-party audit" to verify to the public it complied with a Facebook request in 2015 to delete the data. "It had nothing to do with us", Banks was quoted as saying.

The ministry has threatened to take legal action against companies and individuals engaging in any unauthorised use of such data.

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It suspended its chief executive officer, Alexander Nix, this week after he was filmed bragging about dirty tricks the firm used to obtain information.

In a statement Friday, the company reiterated its previous claims that it did not use any of the data during its work for Trump.

In addition, it was revealed this week that Cambridge Analytica's parent company SCL received almost £200,000 for two Ministry of Defence projects which would have given it access to top secret files.

In 2013, two years after the warning, Aleksandr Kogan, a Cambridge professor, .

Both Cambridge Analytica and Facebook deny they did anything illegal.

"I was quite confident that real work was being undertaken", Kaiser said in a videotaped interview with the Guardian.

Questions are also being raised about Cambridge Analytica's role in Britain's vote to leave the European Union in 2016.

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