Elon Musk has just been handed a huge win after a Delaware judge ordered Twitter to hand over additional data on fake and bot accounts to the Tesla CEO.
Chancellor Kathaleen McCormick of Delaware’s Court of Chancery made the ruling in Musk’s favor during his court battle with Twitter over his failed deal to buy the company.
However, McCormick also rejected some of Musk’s data demands as “absurdly broad.”
She noted that some of his requests consisted of trillions of data points that “no one in their right mind has ever tried to undertake such an effort.”
“My overall impression is that plaintiff has agreed to produce a tremendous amount of information to defendants, and that the information plaintiff has agreed to produce is sufficiently broad to satisfy most of plaintiff’s obligations,” wrote Chancellor McCormick.
“Some additional data from plaintiff (Twitter) seems warranted,” McCormick wrote.
“We look forward to reviewing the data Twitter has been hiding for many months,” said Musk’s attorney, Alex Spiro.
According to Yahoo:
The judge ordered Twitter to hand over data on 9,000 accounts the firm audited at the end of 2021, which opens the door for that information to be used in Musk’s effort to quit the $44 billion deal.
Musk has argued Twitter was dishonest on the number of false or spam accounts, prompting strong denials and a lawsuit from the social media firm that has led to a trial set for mid-October.
Musk’s lawyers pushed hard in a hearing Wednesday to force the firm to turn over mountains of information, while seizing upon a freshly revealed Twitter whistleblower’s claims of serious flaws inside the company.
Musk got some more good news from Twitter whistleblower Peiter “Mudge” Zatko who is backing up Musk’s bot claims.
According to CNN:
Zatko further alleges that Twitter’s leadership has misled its own board and government regulators about its security vulnerabilities, including some that could allegedly open the door to foreign spying or manipulation, hacking and disinformation campaigns.
The whistleblower also alleges Twitter does not reliably delete users’ data after they cancel their accounts, in some cases because the company has lost track of the information, and that it has misled regulators about whether it deletes the data as it is required to do.
The whistleblower also says Twitter executives don’t have the resources to fully understand the true number of bots on the platform, and were not motivated to. Bots have recently become central to Elon Musk’s attempts to back out of a $44 billion deal to buy the company (although Twitter denies Musk’s claims).
According to Insider:
In his complaint, addressed to the Securities and Exchange Commission, Federal Trade Commission, and Department of Justice, dated July, Zatko broadly paints Twitter’s security practices as inadequate and dangerous.
In a section entitled “Lying about Bots to Elon Musk,” Zatko, a famous hacker known as “Mudge,” accuses Twitter of misrepresenting how robustly it measures and combats bots and spam accounts.
A Twitter spokesperson told Insider: “What we’ve seen so far is a false narrative about Twitter and our privacy and data security practices that is riddled with inconsistencies and inaccuracies and lacks important context.”
#BREAK A former Twitter executive, its head of security, has turned whistleblower.
He alleges grave security problems at the company that he says are a risk to national security and democracy.
His first TV interview here:https://t.co/QU823RBnN1 pic.twitter.com/krh7WVOrhe
— Donie O'Sullivan (@donie) August 23, 2022