India Ordered Thousands of Tweets Takedown, Censored Protesters’ Messages, Hire Agents: Whistleblower
WASHINGTON: A whistleblower, ex-employee of Twitter, has jolted the entire world by making startling revelations as to how the leading social media platform maintained ties with authoritarian countries in order to gag dissent voices.
The former Twitter security executive, identified as 51-year-old Peiter “Mudge” Zatko, filed a whistleblower complaint with three federal agencies last month, accusing his former employer of fraud and enabling dangerous security vulnerabilities, including extreme, egregious deficiencies in its defenses against hackers, as well as its meager efforts to fight spam.
Zatko is known as a famous hacker and internet pioneer who was fired by Twitter in January, had accused Twitter of failure in properly protecting its 238 million daily users including government agencies, heads of state and other influential public figures.
In his revelations, Zatko disclosed that the Indian rulers had ordered thousands of tweet and account takedowns, censored protesters’ messages, and threatened the network’s Indian employees with force. He further disclosed that “the Indian government forced Twitter to hire specific individual(s) who were government agents, who … would have access to vast amounts of sensitive data,” without disclosing this fact to users.
It is pertinent to mention here that that a former Twitter manager was indicted just this month for acting as a Saudi agent without proper disclosure.