Data Breach Forces Equifax Chief to Step Down
September 26, 2017
Equifax has abruptly announced the retirement of Richard Smith as chairman of the board and CEO, effective today. Mark Feidler, a current board member, was named non-executive chairman and Paulino do Rego Barros Jr., who previously as president for the company’s Asia Pacific operations, was named interim CEO.
Smith acknowledged that the recent announcement of a massive data breach at Equifax was the driving force for his departure.
“The cybersecurity incident has affected millions of consumers, and I have been completely dedicated to making this right,” he said in a statement. “At this critical juncture, I believe it is in the best interests of the company to have new leadership to move the company forward.”
The company also announced plans to search for a new CEO, noting that it would be “considering candidates both from within and outside the company.”
Smith, who will earn as much as $90 million according to Forbes, will remain as an unpaid adviser to Equifax to assist in the transition.
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