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How Allegations Made By A Whistleblower Have Affected Twitter

How Allegations Made By A Whistleblower Have Affected Twitter
Peiter "Mudge" Zatko, the former head of security at Twitter, filed an explosive whistleblower disclosure, and in the days since those initial reports, the company has had to deal with increased legislative scrutiny, a decline in its stock price, and increased uncertainty in its high-stakes legal dispute with billionaire Elon Musk.
In the disclosure, Zatko claimed that the business has significant privacy and security flaws that could endanger users, investors, and US national security. Additionally, he claimed that Twitter executives had lied to authorities and even the board of the business about its flaws.
In response to the allegations, Twitter has criticized Zatko and generally defended itself, claiming that the disclosure presents a "false narrative" of the business and is "riddled with inconsistencies and inaccuracies."
A Twitter spokesperson stated that Zatko was let go for his "ineffective leadership and poor performance" in January.
Lawmakers, regulators, cybersecurity experts, as well as Musk's lawyers, have all reacted angrily to Zatko's disclosure, raising the possibility that the allegations may have significant and long-lasting repercussions for the social media company. It only gets worse because it happens at a time when Twitter is already dealing with a high level of apprehension among its staff, shareholders, and advertisers due to its upcoming deal with Musk.
The disclosure was sent last month to several US government agencies and congressional committees, including the Securities and Exchange Commission, the Federal Trade Commission, and the Department of Justice. It is approximately 200 pages long, including supporting exhibits.
Following the disclosure on Tuesday, shares of Twitter decreased by 7%. Musk's attempt to back out of the $44 billion acquisition deal for the platform was already hurting the company's stock, which is now trading at just over 50% of its all-time high near $80 from last February.
Here is a look at the reactions that came about as soon as the disclosure was reported on:
The Senate Judiciary Committee declared it would hold a hearing with Zatko on Wednesday, the day after the disclosure was first reported by CNN and The Washington Post, to go over his claims of security lapses and false statements made by Twitter executives.
The hearing is scheduled for September 13, which also happens to be the day shareholders of Twitter will decide whether to support Musk's $44 billion acquisition offer.
"Mr. Zatko's allegations of widespread security failures and foreign state actor interference at Twitter raise serious concerns," said Sens. Dick Durbin and Chuck Grassley, the committee's chair and ranking Republican, respectively. "If these claims are accurate, they may show dangerous data privacy and security risks for Twitter users around the world."

Christopher J. Mitchell

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