Humanosity says….it’s no surprise to find out that Boris Johnson’s key adviser Dominic Cummings is at the heart of plans to use data from the government’s online services portal in the build-up to Brexit. We can only guess that that data would be extremely useful to the Tories in the run-up to the Dec 12th election.
According to reporting by Buzzfeed
In a move that has alarmed Whitehall officials, the prime minister has instructed departments to share data they collect about the usage of the GOV.UK portal so that it can feed into preparations for leaving the European Union at the end of next month.
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The reporting goes on to state that the information being sought will come from the millions of users of the GOV.UK portal through which citizens can access services like Universal Credit
Dominic Cummings, the prime minister’s chief adviser, emailed senior officials instructing them to make sure that ministers, department heads and political aides know that the instruction is “TOP PRIORITY”, according to leaked government documents.
Even though Johnson has claimed that he wants to revolutionise the government’s digital services offering such detailed information would be extremely valuable in any upcoming election.
Watson added: “Given Dominic Cummings’ focus on data science in the Vote Leave campaign this sudden urgent need for big data collection is extremely concerning. We need immediate clarity about how citizens’ data will be protected and assurances that it won’t be misused for party political purposes.”
Cummings, the combative former head of Vote Leave, has a keen understanding of the power of data. The pro-Brexit campaign’s success in the 2016 referendum was partly due to its use of digital technology to target messages.
In a personal blog before entering Downing Street, Cummings mused about the potential for data to disrupt and transform public services: “One of the many ways in which Whitehall and Downing Street should be revolutionised is to integrate physicist-dominated data science in decision making,” he wrote in a post in October 2016.