Former Twitter Security Chief Files Whistleblower Complaint Accusing Company of Cover-Up

Twitter’s former security chief filed a whistleblower complaint to Congress and federal agencies alleging major security issues at the social giant, CNN reports.

Peiter Zetko, the former head of security, submitted a disclosure alleging reckless mismanagement at the company, too many staffers with access to central controls, and attempts to cover up the company’s security vulnerabilities by top executives.

The complaint alleges that Twitter execs misled its board and government regulators about security vulnerabilities that could allow foreign spying, manipulation or hacking.

The complaint also alleges that the company lacks the resources to fully measure the number of bots on the platform, which has come up in Elon Musk’s attempt to buy the social network.

Zatko tried to flag lapses:

Zatko was fired in January for what the company described as poor performance.

Zatko’s complaint said the firing came after he tried to flag security concerns to Twitter’s board and attempted to address non-compliance with an agreement with the Federal Trade Commission.

Zatko has also been subpoenaed by Musk in his legal battle with the company.

"We have already issued a subpoena for Mr. Zatko, and we found his exit and that of other key employees curious in light of what we have been finding,” Musk attorney Alex Spiro told CNN.

Twitter denies:

A Twitter spokesman told CNN that security and privacy are top priorities for the company.

"Mr. Zatko was fired from his senior executive role at Twitter in January 2022 for ineffective leadership and poor performance," the Twitter spokesperson said. "What we've seen so far is a false narrative about Twitter and our privacy and data security practices that is riddled with inconsistencies and inaccuracies and lacks important context. Mr. Zatko's 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 will continue to be."

 

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