Musk Twitter leak raises concern about outside data access

Elon Musk is offering outdoors writers unprecedented accessibility to interior Twitter Inc. info, instructing the recent head of have faith in and security to offer screenshots of users’ accounts.

Screenshots showing internal devices limited to a rather tiny variety of folks in demand of moderating content material ended up shared by journalist Bari Weiss on Thursday. The illustrations or photos carry a watermark — a translucent label — indicating they were being taken from the personnel check out of Twitter’s believe in and basic safety head, Ella Irwin.

The watermarked screenshots, taken considering that December 7, 2022, elevated fears about no matter if Weiss experienced entry to Irwin’s inner account, which would also indicate obtain to delicate facts like a user’s non-public messages, according to men and women with information of Twitter’s techniques.

Irwin later on clarified that she took the screenshots herself to reduce these a situation. “For protection applications, the screenshots asked for arrived from me so we could assure no PII,” or individually identifiable facts, “was uncovered,” Irwin stated on Twitter. “We did not give this access to reporters and no, reporters have been not accessing consumer DMs,” or direct messages.

The watermarks have been additional to employee accounts soon after Twitter was hacked in 2020, the men and women said, a go supposed to make it easier for Twitter to know exactly where screenshots of interior methods ended up coming from.

Weiss did not quickly answer to a request for remark.

The screenshots ended up shared as component of the “Twitter Files,” a selection of internal paperwork and emails from previous Twitter staff members that Musk handed in excess of to outside the house reporters who are now publishing them.

Musk mentioned previously this month that Weiss and yet another writer, Matt Taibbi, have unfettered obtain to the Twitter Data files. People today with expertise of Twitter’s methods are concerned that this sort of broad accessibility could depart Twitter in violation of its 2022 privacy settlement with the Federal Trade Commission.

“Feels like Weiss’ thread really should be plenty of for the FTC to open up an investigation into a violation of the consent decree and maybe get a subpoena for Twitter’s inner access logs,” tweeted Alex Stamos, who formerly ran safety at Meta Platforms Inc. and is now at the Stanford Online Observatory.

Element of Twitter’s FTC agreement stipulates that personnel accessibility to delicate user account details is only granted to folks with a valid small business justification for accessing stated details. The executives who would have authorised that access, or would have investigated its misuse, have left the company.

“The authors have wide and growing accessibility to Twitter’s information,” Weiss tweeted Thursday. “The only ailment we agreed to was that the content would to start with be posted on Twitter.”

Eleanore Beatty

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