Florida Teen Tracking Elon Musk’s Private Jet Raises the Stakes

A Florida teen named Jack Sweeney was offered $5,00 by Elon Musk to delete his Twitter account that tracks the billionaire’s private jet, CNN reported. The handle ElonJet has 150,000 followers and uses a bot that Sweeney developed to monitor where the jet goes. The feed tweets out when and where the place takes off or lands and the duration of each trip.

While only being a freshman in college, Sweeney has developed about a dozen other flight bot accounts that track the travels of high-profile tech titans including – you guessed it – Bill Gates and Jeff Bezos.

Musk personally reached out to Sweeney first back on November 30th of 2021, Protocol first reported. “Can you take this down?” Musk asked Sweeney. “It’s a security risk.”

Concerned that “crazy people” would be tracking his flights, Musk offered Sweeney $5,000 as incentive to take the handle down. Sweeney promptly countered the offer, asking for $50,000, saying he could use the money for college and maybe a Tesla Model 3.

“I don’t love the idea of being shot by a nutcase,” Musk added. The two last exchanged messages on January 19th, when Musk said it didn’t feel right “to pay to shut this down.” CNN Business has viewed the messages.

“Options other than remuneration like an internship would make taking it down a lot easier,” Sweeney replied. Musk has yet to respond to the possibility of that being sufficient compensation.

CNN has evidently reached out to Musk for comment but has yet to be responded to.

Sweeney said he’s been a fan of SpaceX since the first Falcon Heavy launch in 2018. His father works for an airline, which has fueled his interest in aviation. “$5,000 is not enough for how much I get out of it,” Sweeney said. “It doesn’t replace anything, like the enjoyment factor.”

Sweeney did ultimately offer Musk some advice, recommending a blocking program he could use to counter flight tracking programs. Apparently, he took Sweeney’s advice. But, much like a magician never reveals their tricks, Sweeney is still able to track where Musk goes when using his private jet, “It’s just a bit more complicated.”

Your move, Mr. Musk.

Sponsored Content

Sponsored Content