Twitter seems to be in a difficult position and for a change, it’s not because of Mr. Elon Musk, but it is certainly related to him. Twitter’s ex-security chief and hacker-turned-cybersecurity-expert, Mr. Peiter ‘Mudge’ Zatko has placed some serious allegations against the company.
The former security head who was fired in January 2022, had filed a 200-page complaint with the SEC accusing it of misleading shareholders and violating an agreement made with the FTC (Federal Trade Commission) regarding its security standards. He also blamed that the company’s executives have not been completely honest about its data security, privacy issues, and also the number of bot accounts on the platform. This complaint was received by CNN and The Washington Post and published in an edited format.
Mr. Zatko was hired by the founder of Twitter, Jack Dorsey in 2020 when the social media platform was hacked and many accounts including some famous personalities like Barack Obama, Kanye West, and Bill Gates were compromised.
He also thinks that these threats can pose a major threat to users’ personal information, company shareholders, democracy, and national security. Mr. Zatko was hired by the founder of Twitter, Jack Dorsey in 2020 when the social media platform was hacked and many accounts including some famous personalities like Barack Obama, Kanye West, and Bill Gates were compromised. He was fired by Mr. Parag Agrawal in January 2022, and regarding his decision to become the whistleblower, Mr. Zatko told The Washington Post, “I want to finish the job Jack brought me in for, which is to improve the place.” He also mentioned that he had joined the company in the first place because he felt that the platform is a critical resource for the world.
The number of bot accounts on the platform is a major reason why the Tesla owner, Mr. Elon Musk backed out from buying the company. While Twitter had claimed that the number of bot accounts on the platform is less than 5%, Elon Musk didn’t buy it. Recently, he also challenged Mr. Parag Agrawal to an open debate on Twitter regarding the number of bot accounts.
One of Mr. Zatko’s accusations also says that the CEO of Twitter made false statements on the number of accounts and “if accurate measurements ever became public, it would harm the image and valuation of the company.”
One of Mr. Zatko’s accusations also says that the CEO of Twitter made false statements on the number of accounts and “if accurate measurements ever became public, it would harm the image and valuation of the company.” He also alleges the company for focusing on growth over reducing spam on the platform. This piece of information can be crucial for the Musk vs. Twitter battle because it has been in the light for quite some time. Although the ex-security head began the whistleblower process before any involvement of Musk with the company.
A spokesperson from Twitter also issued a comment against the ex-security head. The company has called his “allegations and opportunistic timing appear designed to capture attention and inflict harm on Twitter, its customers, and its shareholders. Security and privacy have long been company-wide priorities at Twitter and we still have a lot of work ahead of us.”
And Elon Musk being Elon Musk, didn’t fail to make a comment about it. He posted an image with the words, ‘Give a Little Whistle’ on his Twitter account.
With everything that is going on between Twitter and Elon Musk, this may or may not have the potential to affect the lawsuit. Musk’s lawyer, Alex Spiro also issued a statement where he mentioned that they have already issued a subpoena for Mr. Zatko.