Geek Of The Week: Brittany Kaiser

Geek Of The Week: Brittany Kaiser

Filling in for Ron this week…

A documentary titled The Great Hack is currently available on Netflix. It is the story behind last year’s Cambridge Analytica scandal and one man’s quest to get his data back from the firm. The film introduces us to a few people that used to work for Cambridge Analytica including this week’s GOTW, Brittany Kaiser.

Kaiser was born in Houston but calls Chicago home. She graduated from high school in 2005, and became a big advocate of human rights. She actually worked for the Obama campaign during the 2008 election, despite attending college in the UK and Hong Kong between 2005-2009. Kaiser earned her PhD in International Law & Diplomacy circa 2015 and was approached by Alexander Nix, CEO of Cambridge Analytica, while still in school. Kaiser went to work for SCL – the parent company of Cambridge Analytica – in 2014, eventually becoming the Director of Business Development. She is currently a founding member of the Digital Asset Trade Association (DATA), a firm supporting data rights.

While Kaiser is often considered a whistleblower, her story is much more complicated than that. She started off campaigning for human rights, ended up a company that compromised the data of millions, and now runs a company that advocates for data rights being the new human rights. It’s quite a path. While some in the press have portrayed her negatively, history may tell the tale of how she showed millions how they were being taken advantage of. It’s ultimately up to you to decide. She has a book coming out in October titled Targeted which is supposed to offer new details not seen in the documentary. Like her or hate her, there’s no doubt Kaiser changed the way we all feel about social media. For that alone, we nominate her as our latest GOTW.

About the Author

avatar KALE: A geek who works in the IT field and lives in Dallas, TX. He is also a music geek who has played in several local bands. Previous to his IT career, Kale worked as a photojournalist. He brings technical advice and artistic counterpoint to the podcast.