Microblogging website Twitter has filed a case against Microsoft-owned platform GitHub, an internet hosting service for software development, for leaking parts of the social media platform’s source code.
As soon as the Elon Musk-owned company was made aware of the leak on Friday, Twitter issued a Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) takedown request to GitHub, which was compiled by GitHub, and the code was pulled down the same day.
The legal document filed on Sunday with the U.S. District Court of the Northern District of California said that “various excerpts” of Twitter’s source code used to run the company online were posted on GitHub.
Further, the social media giant has asked the court to order GitHub to identify who was behind the account which leaked the code-named ‘FreeSpeechEnthusiast’, as well as any other individuals who downloaded it.
While it is unclear how long the leaked code was available online, it is believed to have been public for “at least several months,” reveals the Times report.
Twitter began an investigation into the leak and executives believe that whoever published the code left the San Francisco-based company in late 2022, i.e. when Elon Musk took over the microblogging site as its new owner and CEO. However, the leak was only recently discovered by the Twitter execs, two people briefed on the investigation told the Times.
One concern tied to the leaked source code includes security vulnerabilities that could give cybercriminals the opportunity to hack or steal user data or take down the social media network.
“GitHub does not generally comment on decisions to remove content. However, in the interest of transparency, we publicly share every DMCA [Digital Millennium Copyright Act] takedown request,” a GitHub spokesperson told the BBC.
Ever since Musk took over Twitter in late 2022, the company has faced challenges, be it slashing the workforce by more than a third or facing an exodus of advertisers from the platform.
Musk bought the social media company for $44 billion in October 2022; however, recently the Tesla chief suggested in a memo to the social media company’s staff that it is now valued at less than $20 billion.