Published: Thu, September 28, 2017
Global Media | By Garry Long

Equifax CEO and chairman Richard Smith 'retires' after massive security breach

Equifax CEO and chairman Richard Smith 'retires' after massive security breach

The company announced that Richard Smith has left his role as CEO and chairman of the board effective immediately following a huge security breach which is thought to have impacted as many as 142 million consumers. A spokeswoman for the Senate Banking Committee said that panel's October 4 hearing remains scheduled as planned.

Equifax faces dozens of legal claims over the breach, which the US Federal Trade Commission is investigating.

Equifax tried to appease incensed lawmakers, consumers and investors by announcing the unceremonious retirement of its chief security officer and chief information officer, who were responsible for managing and protecting the company's technology.

Smith had been Equifax's CEO since 2005. Smith will help assist in the transition as an unpaid consultant.

"The Board remains deeply concerned about and totally focused on the cybersecurity incident".

Speaking before a Senate panel on Tuesday, SEC Chair Jay Clayton said it is policy not to confirm or deny investigations, but added: "I'm not ignoring this or other events like it". Herrera says Equifax's massive data breach impacted 15 million Californians. The board "retains the right to change the basis of his departure to a "for cause" termination", because the board of directors has formed a special committee to focus on the issues surrounding the cybersecurity incident.

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But Jones said the company did not fully understand TfL's concerns and that he was eager to speak with its representatives. It now operates ride services in more than 600 cities, covering as much as 95 percent of the USA population.

Smith's abrupt departure follows the resignation of the company's chief security officer and chief information officer as Equifax continues to reel from the hacking scandal. But Equifax didn't reveal the breach until early September.

The announcement was made by Mark Feidler, who is a current board member. He is also set to testify at a hearing of the House Energy and Commerce Committee.

"A CEO walking out the door just days before he is to appear before Congress is an abdication of his responsibility", said Sen. Before the scandal, Smith was hailed for increasing the company's revenue - from $1.4 billion the year he took charge to $3.1 billion last year.

The company said credit card numbers were also compromised for 209,000 US consumers, as were credit dispute accounts for 182,000 people.

He won't receive a "package" to retire, an Equifax spokesperson said. Equifax is also offering one year of free credit file monitoring and identity theft protection services.

And three Equifax executives sold large chunks of stock after the company learned about the hack but before it went public.

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