Report: Google's director of privacy for engineering planning to retire

UPDATED: Amid a lot of tomfoolery on April 1, there are more serious matters at Google today -- including the reported resignation of the Internet giant's director of privacy for product and engineering.
Written by Rachel King, Contributor on

Google's director of privacy for product and engineering, Alma Whitten, is reportedly stepping down from her post.

Forbes reported on Monday that Whitten made an internal announcement to her team that she is planning to retire within a few months.

Currently based in London, Whitten has been with the Mountain View, Calif.-headquartered corporation for a decade now being that she first joined Google in 2003.

During her tenure, she has worked on publications regarding protecting consumer privacy as well as security and user-centered design paradigms.

According to her official bio, Whitten previously received her computer science Ph.D. from Carnegie Mellon University in 2004, specializing in human factors challenges for computer security.

We pinged Google's PR team about this, and we'll update the story as soon as we hear back.

UPDATE: Google replied with the following additional details and confirmation:

During her 10 years at Google, Alma has done so much to improve our products and protect our users. The privacy and security teams, and everyone else at Google, will continue this hard work to ensure that our users’ data is kept safe and secure.

Whitten will be staying through June to help with the transition.

Lawrence You is taking over as director of privacy for product and engineering. You has been at Google for eight years and was one of the founding members of the privacy program. He will report into Eric Grosse, the vice president of security and privacy engineering.

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