Hewlett Packard Co. Chairwoman Patricia C. Dunn's resignation will now take effect immediately, rather than in early 2007 as had been initially announced. The move is an attempt to ease pressure on the company over its methods in plugging a media leak: spying on reporters and its own board of directors.
Speaking to the media Friday, Hewlett Packard's Chief Executive Officer Mark Hurd announced the change in plans; Dunn had been planning to stay on as chairwoman until January.
Hurd also personally apologized for the spying scandal that has dogged the company for more than two weeks. He says while it was important to stop the leaks, important controls broke down, and H-P managers failed to catch the problem.
The new developments follow recent reports that have suggested Hurd himself approved an attempt to unveil a reporter's sources at the company, by sending bogus information in an email embedded with tracking software.
H-P has admitted using private detectives who obtained the telephone records of board members, and reporters.