Equifax CEO Retires after Data Breach
Today, Equifax CEO Richard Smith stepped down from his position after 12 years with the company. His immediate retirement comes on the heels of a huge data breach that affected 143 million Americans.
The Chief Information Officer and Chief Security Officer announced their retirements last week, representing a major overhaul in Equifax’s executive officers. Former CEO Smith will not receive his annual bonus until the credit bureau has completed its data breach investigation. Smith can stay on Equifax’s health plan for life, and may be eligible for a retirement package of $18.48 million. If Smith is found at fault for the breach, the company may issue clawbacks or deny him a portion of his retirement.
Equifax is facing a new round of investigation for the way it went about acquiring the identification protection service ID Watchdog. Equifax purchased the company for $63 million two weeks after their data breach, but the company did not announce the data breach for another month.
The magnitude of the breach made a big impact on the identity protection market, which could have created significantly more revenue for ID Watchdog. Equifax has not yet commented on the timeframe for the ID Watchdog acquisition.