Portions of Twitter’s source code leaked online: Report


March 26, 2023 | 10:49 p.m

Parts of critical computer code that keeps Twitter running have been leaked online, the Elon Musk-led company said in a legal filing on Friday.

The public disclosure of the code came to light after the social media company took legal action to remove leaked information from GitHub, an online platform for software development. According to the New York Times.

After Twitter sent a copyright infringement notice, GitHub agreed to immediately remove the content, though it’s unclear how long the code was online.

It had been public for months, the Times reported.

One concern linked to the leak is that the code includes security vulnerabilities that could give hackers an opportunity to steal user data or take down the site, two people familiar with an internal investigation conducted by Twitter told the Times.

Twitter asked a federal court to compel GitHub to reveal who shared the code and identify anyone else who downloaded it.

An internal investigation into the leak determined that the person who released the code had left the company last year, and executives handling the investigation only recently learned of the leak, two people involved in the investigation told The Times.

Twitter has faced turmoil and upheaval since Elon Musk took over last year.
AFP via Getty Images

The leaker appeared to be on GitHub under the name “FreeBeach Enthusiast,” Twitter’s legal filing said.

The profile, which is a pseudonym to indicate that Musk calls himself a free-speech activist, shows that the man contributed an item to the site in early January.

Musk, who bought the company for $44 billion in October, has faced mountains of turmoil since becoming the social media giant’s CEO.

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About 75% of employees hired before he took control were fired or left.

The leak may have been online for months, the New York Times reported.

As the company faces stark changes, Musk told workers in a Friday email that Twitter is now worth about $20 billion because his massive layoffs and cost-cutting efforts saved the company from bankruptcy, according to an email seen by the Times.

“Twitter is rapidly being reshaped,” he said in an email, adding that he believes the company will someday be worth $250 billion.

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