Former Equifax CEO Richard Smith collects $90M for his last year of outstanding work


#1

Originally published at: https://boingboing.net/2017/09/28/personal-responsibility-2.html


#2

Why would you want to punish success? /s (we’re gonna need a bigger sarcasm tag…)

Isn’t there a law against serial killers profiting from their crimes?


#3

Why do corporations allow their chief officers to be such a drain on company resources? That money would have paid for a lot of InfoSec.


#4

gosh, I hope the stock doesn’t tank and become worthless by the time he gets to “withdraw” it.


#5

Some shareholders are more equal than others. I’m dead serious about that.

Sargasm


#6

$90M for his last year of outstanding work

Worth every penny.

[note sarcasm]


#7

Wait, the compensation is mostly in stock (or possibly stock options)? I don’t think it’s fair to say it’s $90M. When Equifax has to pay damages to 140 million people and the company dissolves, the stock will be worth 0.


#8

We can hope :smiling_imp:


#9

Should be going to jail but instead gets $90M, system works perfectly.


#10

Where’s the free market? I could horribly screw things up for a tenth of that money!


#11

While he was the CEO let’s also not 1) blame him personally for something he wasn’t not personally in charge of. As CEO he is so far removed from that function that he may have not even known what was happening until it was too late. And 2) hold him accountable for a contract he signed before this happened.

Corporations really need to reevaluate executive compensation and start realizing they should not be paying people such exhorbetant salaries and stock options for the little impact they truly have on their business success or failure.

I don’t hate the players. I hate the fake and those that enable the game.


#12

Shaholders should be pissed. But they should also be more careful when drafting employment contracts. There should be a big clause in capital letters for screw-ups like these (but I am afraid not many candidates would show up to the interviews…)


#13

For companies dealing with mass online databases of personal data, I think the CIO should be at the top of the pyramid…


#14

With what happened can this Smith guy be seen as fulfilling his contract?


#15

This must be that market discipline I’ve heard so much about.


#16

Same as it ever was.


#17

cc @MaiqTheLiar

NOTE BOTH OF YOU: I did not say he doesn’t deserve to lose his job. I did not say he has zero culpability.

I said, let’s just keep in mind he is not personally (as in solely or directly) responsible for this. At no point did he flip a switch to cause the breach, let us also acknowledge there was likely little he could have done to prevent it. Which is where my point lies and always has so…why do corporations pay such outrageous compensation for those that do not actually effect things directly one way or the other.

A surgeon SHOULD and IS highly compensated…they literally have a direct hand in the success or failure of an operation. Airline pilots also highly compensated individuals who have direct measure on the outcome of a flight. Fund Managers have direct effect on the success of the overall fund’s growth or failure. These make sense to compensate highly such positions.

Executives do not have zero influence on success/failure, but do not have as much as they believe and should not get compensated so handsomely is my point.


#18

I completely agree with you in this particulars above.

But if a company like Eqifax doesn’t have a CSO (Chief Security Officer) who reports directly to the CEO, then they’re running the business wrong.

But in the above quote, I disagree with you. It happened on his watch. At the very lowest level of culpability, he failed to create a climate of accountability in his subordinates, and he failed so shockingly (again, presuming the lowest possible level of culpability) that his actions amounted to negligence.

This isn’t just my opinion.


#19

I believe we do agree actually. He is absolutely negligent as the “captain of the ship”. What I am saying is no one should speak about it as if he personally did it. Which too often I see this happen. Personal liability and corporate negligence are not the same thing.

Toyota was culpable when their cars were on the fritz; but they were not driving the cars.


#20

Dear Hackers,

If you’re going to steal our information and drain our back accounts, please start with this guy. He will have $90M soon. I might have $90. I’m sure you’ll get to me eventually but am I really worth the effort?

Thanks!