Following the high-profile publication of 10 GB of data stolen from the adultery website AshleyMadison.com, parent company Avid Life Media has announced that its CEO Noel Biderman is resigning “in mutual agreement with the company.”
“This change is in the best interest of the company and allows us to continue to provide support to our members and dedicated employees,” ALM said in a statement. “We are steadfast in our commitment to our customer base. We are actively adjusting to the attack on our business and members’ privacy by criminals.”
“We will continue to provide access to our unique platforms for our worldwide members,” the company added. “We are actively cooperating with international law enforcement in an effort to bring those responsible for the theft of proprietary member and business information to justice.”
In a followup statement published this morning, the company added, “Recent media reports predicting the imminent demise of Ashley Madison are greatly exaggerated. The company continues its day-to-day operations even as it deals with the theft of its private data by criminal hackers.”
Noting that hundreds of thousands of new users have signed up for the service in the time since the breach, the company stated, “We have customers in nearly every zip code in the United States, as well as users in more than 50 countries around the world.”
Still, Eric Chiu, president and founder of HyTrust, said Biderman’s resignation is just one of many examples of how high-profile breaches can cost executives their jobs.
“We have now seen the CEO and CIO of Target, director of the Office of Personnel Management, and now the CEO of Avid Life Media, parent company of Ashley Madison, lose their jobs after high profile attacks,” Chiu said. Amy Pascal also stepped down as head of Sony Pictures Entertainment earlier this year following a massive breach at the company.
“Data breaches are a huge cost to organizations, including loss of trust, brand damage, lawsuits and business impact,” Chiu added. “Understanding and placing a high importance on security will be a key requirement moving forward for any executive in the connected world that we live in.”