Twitter whistleblower Peiter Zatko joins Rapid7 as cybersecurity consultant

5 Jan 2023

Peiter Zatko. Image: DARPA

Rapid7 CEO Corey Thomas welcomed Peiter Zatko to the company, citing the Twitter former head of security’s ‘extensive experience’.

Peiter Zatko, whose name made headlines when he blew the whistle on his former employer Twitter has joined security company Rapid7.

Zatko will advise the company’s consulting clients in his first major role since he was fired from Twitter.

He was ousted from his Twitter job as head of security when he clashed with the company’s former CEO Parag Agrawal. Zatko later decided to blow the whistle on some of Twitter’s security practices, which he had been hired to improve in 2020.

In his new role at Rapid7, Zatko will report directly to the company’s CEO Corey Thomas. He will advise Rapid7’s executive team and its customers on how to make informed decisions through data.

“Peiter and I have a longstanding relationship and have spoken at length about the importance of data and research when it comes to measuring cybersecurity programme effectiveness,” said Thomas in a statement about his decision to hire Zatko.

“In order to move our industry forward, we must educate organisations on how and what to measure to ensure we are making the right investment.

“Peiter’s extensive experience in this field and his work around measuring cybersecurity practices will be invaluable for both Rapid7 and our customers. I am very much looking forward to working with him in the coming months.”

Zatko gained extensive experience in the cybersecurity field even before he joined Twitter. He has been working in the area since the ‘90s and was a member of several prominent hacker collectives, where he was known as ‘Mudge’.

He has advised the US government on cybersecurity matters as both a ‘hacktivist’ and an official employee. In 1998, he and several other hacker activists were invited to testify to US Congress about security vulnerabilities.

Zatko later became cyber programme manager at the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) in 2010.

He also worked at payments company Stripe prior to joining Twitter.

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Blathnaid O’Dea was a Careers reporter at Silicon Republic until 2024.