Elon Musk announced the move to buy Twitter last week. According to court filings, the billionaire accused the company of putting a whistle-blower to destroy evidence of its missteps on the behest of its employees. Peiter Zatko, Twitter''s former chief of security, said in October3 that the book contained notes of the whistle-blower''s meetings with his employees during his year-long tenure.
Zatko has been at the core of Musk''s arguments that Twitter misled him about a slew of operational difficulties at the social media platform, which justified walking away from the $44 billion (roughly 3.6 lakh crore) purchaseout. Last week, the billionaire reversed his course and agreed to buy the company for the original $54.20 (roughly Rs. 4,500) per share price.
In the unveiled filing, Twitter''s attempt to buy Mr Zatko''s silence failed, but Twitter achieved its secondary objective, ensuring Mr Zatko''s corroborating evidence would never be disclosed.
Twitter was not immediately responding to a request for comment on the filing, which includes a Twitter lawsuit to force Musk to buyout that has been paused.
Kathaleen StJMcCormick, a Delaware chancery judge, delayed the trial on October 28 and set a deadline for Musk and Twitter to complete the deal. Musk''s lawyers are demanding that McCormick sanction Twitter''s attorneys for causing the destruction of potential evidence in the case.
When Zatko said to the Senate Judiciary Committee last month that Twitter''s unruly approach to computer security jeopardized US national security, he sparked a stir in Washington.
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Twitter said it fired Zatko in January for poor performance and said he provided a false narrative about Twitter and our privacy and data security practices, riddled with inconsistencies and inaccuracies, and lacks a specific context.
Zatko claims to have warned Twitter CEO Parag Agrawal about serious computer security concerns and privacy concerns related to the social media platform''s operations, which constituted of violation of settlements reached by the company. He also claimed that his Twitter colleagues expressed no interest in doing a comprehensive dive into the number of spam and robot accounts among the company''s more than 230 million users.
According to Musk''s lawyers, Twitter''s top two attorneys, Vijaya Gadde and Sean Edgett, and Chief Privacy Officer Damien Kieran, along with Agrawal, had accused Twitter of trying to hide legal settlements by ordering Zatko to destroy his documents.
According to the unsealed filing, Musk''s legal team was deprived of substantial corroborating evidence of Mr Zatko''s statements. He would also support his account of key meetings and conversations relevant to this case.
Birchall admitted in the filing that he was not well-versed in knowledge, but rather in fact, had no preparation on topic after topic. The legal team of Twitter has said that Birchall is in charge of Musk''s family office and is deeply involved in negotiations about the purchase of the social media platform.
The lawyers for Twitter claim that Birchall had little or no information about his communications with government authorities about the deal, the hiring of data scientists to investigate the number of spam or robot accounts that ties Twitter''s customer base, or the Musk side''s efforts to provide information.
A Musk''s lawyers'' spokesperson did not respond to a letter on Monday to Twitter''s complaints about Birchall''s deposition appearance.
Bloomberg L.P.P. for 2022