Twitter engineers can still use ‘GodMode’ and tweet from any account, ex-employee says

MADRID, Jan. 25 (Portaltic/EP) –

A former Twitter employee ha denounced before the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) of the United States that the platform engineers still have access to an internal program known as ‘GodMode’with which they can ‘tweet’ from any account, as well as delete and recover any ‘tweet’.

This claim supports the Testimony of former Twitter security chief Peiter Zatko, who filed a complaint last August that pointed out the lack of security on the social network and the violation of the terms of an agreement on privacy protections between the company and the FTC, since it claimed to have a firm security plan.

In this sense, the new complainant has indicated that, after the purchase of Twitter by Elon Muskthe company continues to breach legal obligations that are provided for in the agreement, despite the fact that Twitter claimed that it had already fixed this problem.

This was reported by a former Twitter employee in statements to The Washington Post, which has also had access to the complaint filed. Specifically, the complainant has reported to members of Congress and the FTC about what any social network engineer can activate an internal program that was known as ‘GodMode’. With this mode, workers they can ‘tweet’ from any account, as well as delete and recover any ‘tweet’.

However, the former employee has explained that, after internal objections about this program, engineers changed the name to ‘privileged mode’. In addition, in his statements he has assured that the purpose of this was allow the Twitter staff to ‘tweet’ on behalf of advertisers who couldn’t do it themselves.

In fact, the former employee of the company stresses in his complaint that the ‘GodMode’ code remains on any engineer’s computer. To activate it, they just need to change one line of code from ‘false’ to ‘true’ and run the mode from a production machine, which they can access via a communications protocol known as SSH.

According to The Washington Post, the complaint includes screenshots of the code in this way. In these images you can see that the section in which allows to delete ‘tweets’ contains a comment warning of such action: ‘Think before you do this.’ Furthermore, the complainant has indicated that Twitter “does not have the ability to track which, if any, engineers use or abuse ‘GodMode’.”

The security of Twitter began to be questioned after a Teen Crypto Scammer Attack in 2020, who hacked into the company’s internal systems and posted from the accounts of the likes of Joe Biden, Barack Obama, and even Elon Musk. As described in the complaint, after this hack “Twitter publicly stated that the problems were fixed.”

A) Yes, Twitter launched at that time a comprehensive security program of the information which he settled with the FTC. As explained by the former worker, the company defined it as a program “reasonably designed to protect the security, privacy, confidentiality and integrity of non-public consumer information.”

Nevertheless, Peiter Zatko already questioned this program in your complaint. Similarly, the new complainant points out that, since ‘GodMode’ still exists“is one more example that the Twitter’s public statements to users and investors were false and/or misleading.” For all these reasons, the former worker has indicated that this demonstrates “legal violations by Twitter” before the FTC.

Within this framework, according to The Washington Post, which has had access to statements from sources who have been in contact with the FTC, is agency may fine company $1 billion or more “if it concludes that the company has continually violated the FTC ruling.”

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