Twitter's Ex-Security Head Files Whistleblower Complaint

Twitter Inc.’s former head of security filed a whistleblower complaint against the company, accusing it of failing to protect sensitive user data and lying about its security problems, just weeks ahead of the social-networking platform’s courtroom battle with Elon Musk.

Peiter Zatko, who was fired as Twitter’s head of security earlier this year, submitted the complaint last month to the Securities and Exchange Commission, according to a representative of Whistleblower Aid, 

an organization that helped file the claims. His submission says that he “uncovered extreme, egregious deficiencies by Twitter in every area of his mandate,” including privacy, digital and physical security, platform integrity and content moderation.

Among Mr. Zatko’s claims are that Twitter executives, including CEO Parag Agrawal, deliberately undercounted the prevalence of spam on the platform.

Those claims could further complicate Twitter’s battle with Mr. Musk, whom the company sued in July to enforce a $44 billion takeover deal.

Mr. Musk has alleged Twitter misrepresented its business, particularly as it relates to the level of spam or bot accounts—claims Twitter denies. A five-day nonjury trial is slated to begin in October

The existence of the whistleblower complaint was earlier reported by the Washington Post and CNN.

A Twitter spokeswoman said Mr. Zatko was fired “for ineffective leadership and poor performance” and that the complaint “is riddled with inconsistencies and inaccuracies and lacks important context.”