Verizon Communications Inc. investors will weigh in this year on a proposal to tie top executives’ pay to how well it protects networks and customer information from cyberattacks.
The proposal, from New York state’s nearly $200 billion pension fund and socially conscious investment firm Trillium Asset Management, is going to a shareholder vote after the Securities and Exchange Commission on March 7 denied the telecommunications company’s request to block it.
Verizon didn’t explain its board’s view when it argued that cybersecurity is part of its day-to-day business and shouldn’t be subject to a vote, SEC staff said. The staff recently issued guidance telling companies that make such requests to show that their board was involved.
Verizon revealed in October that all 3 billion accounts from its newly acquired subsidiary Yahoo! Inc. were affected by what’s considered the largest data privacy breach in history. Yahoo! had previously said 1 billion accounts were breached.
Verizon itself has also faced cybersecurity issues, the shareholder proposal said. A Verizon spokesman didn’t immediately return a request for comment.
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