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Twitter takeover by Elon Musk: Patrick Breyer warns against mandatory authentication plans

European Parliament Press releases

Today it became known that Twitter is accepting Elon Musk’s takeover bid for 44 billion dollars. In the run-up, the Tesla boss had announced: “If our twitter bid succeeds, we will … authenticate all real humans”. MEP Patrick Breyer (Pirate Party) comments:

“Musk’s planned authentication requirement endangers the security of our personal data. Our identity, private address and private phone number are not safe in the hands of Twitter, Facebook, Google etc. Experience shows that it is only a matter of time before personal data is hacked or leaked and ends up in the hands of criminals.

Abolishing anonymous Twitter accounts would endanger whistleblowers and human rights defenders as well as women, children, minorities, victims of abuse and stalking. After all the FBI infamously persecuted Wikileaks activists using data disclosed by Twitter. Only anonymity effectively protects us from hacking, threats, bullying, stalking and discrimination online.

The Twitter takeover is another reason to sign up for privacy-friendly, decentralized alternative services like Mastodon. NSA and FBI have no access to European nodes and anonymity is guaranteed.”