The ex-chief of security at Twitter has heavily criticized the company for its failures in security and privacy. He suggests that the conduct of the social media behemoth poses a significant threat to national security.
An 84-page report from a whistleblower has recently come to light, submitted to the US government by Peiter “Mudge” Zatko, Twitter’s ex-chief of security. The report, filed last month, criticizes his previous employer for their supposedly inadequate security measures and for not adhering to an FTC order designed to safeguard user data.
Twitter has issued a rebuttal, characterizing Zatko as a “dissatisfied worker” who was dismissed due to subpar performance and leadership skills. In a message to his staff, Twitter’s CEO, Parag Agrawal, insists that Zatko’s allegations represent a “misleading story filled with discrepancies and errors, and lacking crucial details.”
This is a concise summary of the claims made and Twitter’s subsequent response.
Zatko, a well-regarded ethical hacker who held the position of Twitter’s Security Chief for about 15 months from 2020 to 2022, leveled charges against Twitter for a series of inadequate security and privacy measures which cumulatively posed a threat to national security.
Prominent allegations encompass:
Twitter’s Subdued Rebuttal
Twitter’s main counterclaim to Zatko’s accusations is that he is simply an unhappy employee, incompetent in his role and blaming Twitter for his own shortcomings. They highlight that they have not only acknowledged but are also actively tackling many of the IT security concerns raised by Zatko.
A purported reply from Parag Agrawal, the CEO of Twitter, originally intended for Twitter staff, was shared on the internet.
Fresh News: Twitter’s newly appointed CEO @paraga shares his thoughts on the whistleblower incident for the first time.
He sent this message to his team today morning. pic.twitter.com/WY4TCqbA5q
— Donie O’Sullivan (@donie) August 23, 2022
Fresh News: Twitter’s novice CEO @paraga comments on the whistleblower case for the first time.
Dispatched this communication to the team members this AM. pic.twitter.com/WY4TCqbA5q
— Authored by Donie O’Sullivan (@donie) on August 23, 2022
In response to the situation, leading figures from both the Democratic and Republican parties in Congress have pledged to look into the allegations. The Head of the Senate Judiciary Committee, Sen. Richard Durbin (D-IL), has affirmed his commitment to probing the whistleblower’s revelation.
The informant’s claims regarding extensive security lapses at Twitter, intentional deceit by senior management towards government bodies, and the company’s infiltration by overseas intelligence agencies, pose grave worries.
— Senator Richard Durbin (@SenatorDurbin) August 23, 2022