Ex-Twitter worker receives over three years in jail for spying for Saudi Arabia

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Former Twitter worker Ahmad Abouammo has been sentenced to 3 and a half years in jail after being convicted of spying for Saudi Arabia, Reuters and NBC News report. Ahmad Abouammo was employed by Twitter between 2013 and 2015, throughout which era he used his place as a media partnerships supervisor for the Center East and North Africa to entry private data of customers important of the Saudi authorities and go it to Saudi officers.

Reuters notes that Abouammo acquired a $42,000 watch as a present from a Saudi official, in addition to two $100,000 wire transfers. In alternate he seemed up data on two Twitter customers, together with telephone numbers and beginning dates. After leaving the corporate in 2015 Abouammo continued to try to affect Twitter to confirm Saudi accounts or take away posts highlighted by the Saudi authorities, in keeping with testimony from an FBI agent.

Abouammo acquired tons of of hundreds of {dollars} in wire transfers

Abouammo was convicted in August this year for charges including performing as an agent of a international authorities, in addition to fraud, cash laundering, and falsification of data. He was first charged in 2019 alongside one other Twitter worker who was accused of accessing hundreds of Twitter accounts for the Saudi authorities. The second worker, Ali Alzabarah, left the US earlier than being charged. 

The case highlights the extraordinarily delicate data Twitter holds, given the quite a few excessive profile politicians, celebrities, and businesspeople that use its service each day.

Saudi Arabia’s Kingdom Holding Firm, which is 16.9 % owned by the Saudi Arabian sovereign wealth fund, and the non-public workplace of Prince Alwaleed bin Talal, declare to collectively be the second largest investor in Twitter following Elon Musk’s takeover of the corporate. The US government has reportedly been looking into whether or not Musk’s international funding companions might entry customers’ non-public information on the platform. 

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