The allegations against the social media company formerly known as Twitter, now referred to as “X,” in a civil US lawsuit are indeed concerning and involve serious accusations related to its interactions with Saudi Arabian authorities. Here’s a breakdown of the key points from the reported allegations:
Disclosure of User Data: The lawsuit accuses social media company X of disclosing confidential user data to Saudi authorities in July and December 2015 at a much higher rate than it did for other countries, including the US, UK, or Canada. This implies that the company may have cooperated with Saudi authorities in compromising the privacy of its users.
Infiltration by Saudi Agents: The lawsuit centers on the infiltration of the California-based company by three Saudi agents, two of whom posed as Twitter employees in 2014 and 2015.
Accusations of Willful Ignorance: Lawyers for Areej al-Sadhan, the sister of the detained aid worker, have updated their claim to include allegations that Twitter, under the leadership of then-CEO Jack Dorsey, either willfully ignored or had knowledge of the Saudi government’s campaign to target its critics. The lawsuit suggests that Twitter provided assistance to the Saudi government due to financial considerations and efforts to maintain close ties with the Saudi government, which was a top investor in the company.
Saudi Government’s Campaign: The lawsuit points to the involvement of Saudi officials and close aides to Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, such as Saud al-Qahtani, in actions that allegedly harmed perceived Saudi dissidents using Twitter.
Security Risks and Red Flags: The lawsuit alleges that Twitter had ample notice of security risks related to the internal personal data of its users, including the potential threat of insiders illegally accessing this data. It claims that Twitter was aware of the alleged malign campaign against dissenting voices but did not take appropriate action.
These allegations are significant and raise concerns about the relationship between social media platforms and governments, as well as the protection of user data and the potential consequences for individuals who use such platforms to express dissenting opinions. It’s important to note that legal proceedings are ongoing, and the outcome of the lawsuit will determine the veracity of these allegations.