Equifax is continuing to reshape its leadership in the wake of the massive data breach that exposed the personal information of nearly 148 million U.S. consumers to hackers.
Earlier this year, the credit reporting agency named a new CEO, choosing Mark Begor as its next CEO. Begor replaced Paulino do Rego Barros, who took over as interim CEO when Richard Smith retired in the immediate aftermath of the company’s disclosure of the breach.
The credit reporting agency said in September 2017 that the names, Social Security numbers, birth dates, addresses and, in some instances, driver’s license numbers, of approximately 143 million consumers were stolen in the data breach. That figure was eventually increased to 148 million.
And after that initial disclosure, several Equifax executives stepped down, including several who handled the company’s technology and information security.
Back in February, Equifax added Jamil Farshchi as the company’s new chief information security officer, replacing one of the executives who left after the breach.
Now, the company is adding another executive to help move the company forward.
The credit reporting agency announced Thursday that it hired Bryson Koehler to serve as its chief technology officer.
Koehler comes to Equifax from IBM, where he served as chief technology officer of IBM’s Watson and Cloud Platform.
At Equifax, Koehler will be responsible for leading the company’s global information technology strategy and development. “Koehler will also work closely with the company's product, data, and analytics teams to drive technology and speed into product and data insights delivery to customers and partners,” the company said in a release.
At IBM, Koehler led a team of cloud engineers, architects, security professionals, product and offering managers, technical communications specialists, research and development activities and operational systems reliability engineers.
Equifax also touted Koehler’s experience in data security, which is obviously important for a company that just allowed the personal information of 148 million Americans to become exposed to hackers.
“With security being a central priority for IBM, (Koehler) brought all of the security teams together to ensure IBM had the world's most compliant cloud, strengthening the company's technical credibility,” Equifax said in its release.
Prior to working at IBM, Koehler was chief technology and information officer at The Weather Channel Companies, which was acquired in 2015 by IBM. In this position, Koehler was responsible for setting the strategic vision, development, technical operations, financial planning, and execution of all technology initiatives for TWCC.
Earlier in his career, Koehler served as senior vice president of global revenue and guest technology at the Intercontinental Hotels Group.
“We are excited to welcome Bryson to our senior leadership team as we continue to invest heavily in data security and enhance our information technology infrastructure,” Begor said.
“Bryson is known for his deep technical and cloud skills, consistent, focused, and strong performance within the industry, and for being a creative problem solver who has achieved business goals by leveraging the innovative use of technology,” Begor added. “This is paramount to our future success as we advance our technology capabilities; and enhance data security and the speed, simplicity, and reliability of our products. We are thrilled to have a leader of Bryson's caliber joining Equifax at such a pivotal time in our history.”
Koehler said that he is looking forward to helping drive Equifax’s technology into the future.
“The world of AI is unlocking massive potential in how data can be used, and cloud-based AI technology is a game changer for developing secure and reliable data-driven products,” Koehler said. “I see tremendous opportunity for Equifax to become a leading data-driven technology company, and I’m excited to join its highly-talented team to bring new energy that accelerates Equifax's transformation into a leader of insight forecasting.”