Equifax CEO and chairman, Richard Smith, has stepped down from both positions this week and is retiring.
The credit reporting agency has been under fire in the last few weeks since it was revealed that it suffered a massive data breach where 143 million Americans had their personal information exposed.
It was earlier this month that the company’s chief security and chief technology officers also said they would retire.
In Smith’s place, Mark Feidler will serve as executive chairman while seven-year veteran of the company Paulino do Rego Barros, Jr., will act as interim CEO.
Shortly after the news of Smith’s retirement, shares of the stock sank around 2%. The stock was even halted prior to the released.
“The Board remains deeply concerned about and totally focused on the cybersecurity incident. We are working intensely to support consumers and make the necessary changes to minimize the risk that something like this happens again. Speaking for everyone on the Board, I sincerely apologize. We have formed a Special Committee of the Board to focus on the issues
arising from the incident and to ensure that all appropriate actions are taken,” said Feidler in the press release.
The company is facing multiple class-action lawsuits as well as investigation from federal authorities.
“The cybersecurity incident has affected millions of consumers, and I have been completely dedicated to making this right.
At this critical juncture, I believe it is in the best interests of the company to have new leadership to move the company
forward,” commented Smith in the press release announcing his retirement.
“Equifax is a substantially stronger company than it was 12 years ago. At this time, however, the Board and Rick agree that a change of leadership is in order.”
Disclaimer: We have no position in Equifax Inc. (NYSE: EFX) and have not been compensated for this article.