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Jimmy Patronis. Image via AP.


Jimmy Patronis reaffirms call for FDLE investigation after Floridians arrested for Twitter breach

“The tech-giant needs to step up its game.”

Chief Financial Officer Jimmy Patronis reaffirmed his call for an investigation into Twitter’s recent security breach on Friday after a Florida man and teen were arrested in connection to the scam.

“News that the alleged mastermind behind the recent unprecedented Twitter hacks was arrested right in Florida’s backyard is alarming,” Patronis said. “The fact that a teenager could gain such access to Twitter is mind boggling and goes to prove that the tech-giant needs to step up its game.”

The two men and 17-year-old teen are accused of hacking into the Twitter accounts of high-profile celebrities, politicians and business leaders and swindling more than $100,000 in Bitcoin from users.

The scam, which tricked users into believing they’d be receiving larger returns, was launched from the accounts of figures such as former President Barack Obama, Tesla and SpaceX CEO Elon Musk and Microsoft founder Bill Gates.

Days later, the attack prompted Patronis to send a letter to Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey and call on the Florida Department of Law Enforcement to begin an investigation.

“This is exactly why I called on FDLE to conduct an investigation and for Twitter to provide vital information to help protect our citizens,” Patronis said. “Twitter is an extremely powerful tool that governments, industries, members of the media and billions of other people rely on for communicating important information.”

Twitter has vowed to cooperate with subsequent law enforcement investigations and said it would provide a more detailed report later once the investigations are completed.

“We must work together to ensure all Floridians are protected from online fraud,” Patronis said. “Thank you to our federal and state law enforcement partners especially Commissioner Swearingen and the FDLE Team, as well as State Attorney Andrew Warren for their hard work in bringing this alleged scam artist to justice.”

Written By

Jason Delgado covers news out of the state capital for Florida Politics. After a stint with the U.S. Army, Jason attended the University of Central Florida where he studied American Policy and National Security. His past bylines include WMFE-NPR and POLITICO Florida. Throw him a line at or on Twitter at @JasonDelgadoFL.

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