Target CIO resigns; chain to overhaul info security

New York -- Target Corp.’s chief information office, Beth Jacob, is resigning, effective Wednesday, as the retailer continues to deal with the fallout from its widespread data breach. The resignation came as Target said it is overhauling its information security practices.

“While we are still in the process of an ongoing investigation, we recognize that the information security environment is evolving rapidly,” said Gregg Steinhafel, chairman, president and CEO, Target, in a statement released by the chain. “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, Steinhafel added, Target will conduct an external search for an interim CIO to help the retailer through its transformation.

Target also said it is working with an external adviser, Promontory Financial Group, to help it evaluate its technology, structure, processes and talent as part of the overhaul.

“We will also be elevating the role of the chief information security officer and hiring externally for this position,” Steinhafel said. “Additionally, we will be initiating an external search for a chief compliance officer.”

Previously, compliance duties were overseen by Target's current VP of assurance risk and compliance, who already announced plans to retire at the end of March. With the overhaul, Target will separate the responsibility for assurance risk and compliance.

Jacob was appointed CIO of Target in 2008. In her resignation letter to Steinhafel, Jacob said resigning was a "difficult decision," but that "this was a time of significant transformation for the retail industry and for Target," the Associated Press reported. She did not mention the breach.