Target CIO Jacob resigns following data breach

The news about Beth Jacob's departure comes as Target is trying to restore trust in the company's security processes and procedures.
Written by Larry Dignan, Contributor

Target Chief Information Officer Beth Jacob has reportedly resigned as the company moves to recover from a series of data breaches.

The news, reported by the Associated Press, comes as Target is trying to restore trust in the company's security processes and procedures. Target saw a sales drop off after as many as personal data for as many as 110 million accounts may have been breached.

Jacob had been CIO since 2008. In a recent interview with ZDNet prior to the breaches, Jacob walked through Target's approach to mobile commerce, the in-store experience and ironically how point of sale technology leaves an impression. Target's point-of-sale terminals were at the core of Target's data breach.

Calls are in to Target and we'll update as we hear more. 

So far, the tab for Target's data breach has mostly been covered by insurance. The costs for the fourth quarter were $61 million, but $44 million was covered by insurance.

It's not surprising that Jacob was the one to take the fall. CEO Gregg Steinhafel, who is also under fire amid weaker than expected sales and the data breach, said an interim CIO will be named to work through the transition.

Here's Steinhafel's statement:

While we are still in the process of an ongoing investigation, we recognize that the information security environment is evolving rapidly. To ensure that Target is well positioned following the data breach we suffered last year, we are undertaking an overhaul of our information security and compliance structure and practices at Target. As a first step in this effort, Target will be conducting an external search for an interim CIO who can help guide Target through this transformation.

We will also be elevating the role of the Chief Information Security Officer and hiring externally for this position. Additionally, we will be initiating an external search for a Chief Compliance Officer. We are also working with an external advisor, Promontory Financial Group, to help us evaluate our technology, structure, processes and talent as a part of this transformation.

Previously: Target's data breach tab mostly covered by insurance so far | How hackers stole millions of credit card records from Target | Target hackers hit air-conditioning firm first as a way in | Target's data breach: It gets worse | Many times bitten, retailers scramble to prevent another Target-like meltdown | Visa CEO: We need better security, EMV chips, tokens

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