Elon Musk, the CEO of Twitter, is “not above the law,” a US regulator warns

4 mins read

Following reports that Twitter’s senior privacy and compliance managers left the network, a US regulator says it is closely monitoring developments there with “grave concern.”

According to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), Elon Musk, the new CEO, “is not above the law.”

Separately, Mr. Musk allegedly informed staff members that Twitter’s bankruptcy was a possibility.

Since Mr. Musk started sacking hundreds of employees last week, the firm has been in a state of chaos.

There are worries that Twitter may be overrun with fake accounts as a result of the opportunity for users to purchase verified status as part of a new subscription.

Twitter’s former head of trust and safety, Yoel Roth, updated his profile on the social media site on Thursday to reflect his departure from the position.

According to reports, the company’s top security officer Lea Kissner along with chief compliance officer Marianne Fogarty and chief privacy officer Damien Kieran all departed.

The departures might raise the likelihood that Twitter would disobey legal directives. In May, the company received a $150 million (£119 million) punishment and was had to abide by new privacy laws.

Director of Public Affairs for the FTC Douglas Farrar stated, “We are monitoring recent events at Twitter with grave concern.”

Companies are required to abide by our consent decrees, and no chief executive or company is above the law.

Mr Farrer said the FTC had “new tools to ensure compliance, and we are prepared to use them”.

To resolve claims that it had improperly exploited user data to assist in the sale of targeted advertisements, Twitter paid the sum in May.

In addition to paying a fine, it had to accept new guidelines and implement a stronger privacy and security program, which was in charge of the executives who reportedly resigned.

Since taking control, Mr. Musk has ousted previous CEO Parag Agrawal and other key executives. The company’s heads of advertising and marketing have also gone, raising fears that Twitter may not have enough staff in place to ensure that it remains compliant with regulations.

Separately, Mr. Musk allegedly informed staff members in a meeting that he was uncertain about the company’s future financial performance and that bankruptcy was a possibility.

According to reports, Mr. Musk added, “We just obviously need to bring in more cash than we spend. If we don’t do that and there’s a large negative cash flow, then bankruptcy is not out of the question.”

According to sources, he reportedly exhorted them to work with a “maniacal sense of haste.”

We asked Twitter for a response. Twitter no longer had a communications department, according to technology website The Verge, which published a complete transcript of Mr. Musk’s address to employees.

Many significant advertisers are alarmed by the way Mr. Musk is leading the social media company.

The majority of Twitter’s revenue comes from advertising, however several significant sponsors have suspended their campaigns while they assess the adjustments that Elon Musk is doing.

Chipotle Mexican Grill announced on Thursday that it had suspended all sponsored and owned Twitter content “until we better understand the trajectory of the platform under its new leadership”.

It joined other companies, such as the automakers General Motors, Volkswagen, and Audi, the pharmaceutical behemoth Pfizer, and the food producer General Mills, which is the maker of products like Cheerios and Lucky Charms.

Some brands are said to be concerned that Mr Musk will relax content moderation rules and reverse permanent Twitter bans given to controversial figures, including former US President Donald Trump.



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