Business & Economy

Twitter unable to protect user data, says former executive

Washington DC, Sep 13 (EFE).- Former Twitter security chief Peiter “Mudge” Zatko denounced Tuesday before the United States Senate that the company is incapable of protecting the data of users and it has no interest in doing so.

“I’m here today because Twitter leadership is misleading the public,” Zatko said before a Senate committee.

The former executive, who worked for Twitter between November 2020 and January 2022, said the company does not know “what data they have, where it lives, or where it came from” and cannot protect it.

He added that its employees “have too much access to too much data and too many systems.”

“It’s not far fetched to say a Twitter employee could take over the accounts of all of the senators in this room,” he said.

Zatko said he repeatedly warned the company’s management about the security flaws and decided to report it because they did not pay heed to it.

He underlined that Twitter’s security flaws threaten national security, compromise users’ privacy and security, and sometimes threaten the future of the company.

In July, Zatko denounced before the US Congress and several federal agencies serious cybersecurity problems in the social network.

According to the complaint, seen by The Washington Post and CNN, the company allows too many employees access to its central controls.

He also claimed that one or more workers may be working for foreign intelligence services and that company executives have lied to regulators about security deficiencies.

Zatko further said that Twitter does not properly erase the data of users who delete their accounts, sometimes because it has lost the information, and has neither the resources nor any interest in knowing the number of “bots” on the social network.

The “bots” issue is at the heart of the trial between Twitter and billionaire Elon Musk after the latter decided to withdraw its purchase of the company, partly because he felt he was not told the truth about the number of fake accounts on the social network.

According to Twitter, whose CEO Parag Agrawal has refused to appear before the Senate committee, Zatko lost his post due to ineffective leadership and poor discharge of his duties. EFE


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