HomeWinBuzzer NewsMicrosoft’s New Security Measures: Employee Evaluations and Bonuses

Microsoft’s New Security Measures: Employee Evaluations and Bonuses

Discussing Microsoft's security issues, Microsoft president Brad Smith says the company will offer rewards to employees for cybersecurity contributions.

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In an effort to fortify its defenses, has adopted new policies linking security practices directly to employee performance reviews. CNBC reports that this change follows a series of that exposed vulnerabilities within the company's systems.

Following multiple cyber intrusions, Microsoft is scrutinizing its security strategies. In mid-2023, a cyber-espionage campaign attributed to Chinese hackers compromised Outlook accounts of U.S. and European users. Another breach in early 2024, allegedly by Russian actors, accessed emails belonging to high-ranking Microsoft executives. These events highlighted gaps in Microsoft's cybersecurity defenses.

Amid these developments, the newly introduced Recall feature in has faced pushback due to potential security risks. Researchers warn that it could lead to unauthorized data access. Consequently, Microsoft has made the feature optional, allowing users to decide whether to activate it.

Cybersecurity Integral to Employee Assessments

Microsoft President , addressing the U.S. House Committee on Homeland Security, outlined the company's revised approach to cybersecurity. Starting in the fiscal year beginning July 1, 2025, employees will discuss their cybersecurity efforts in biannual performance reviews known as “Connect” meetings. These discussions are set to influence annual bonuses and overall compensation.

Senior executives will also experience changes in their performance evaluations, with a third of their review based on their cybersecurity contributions. This initiative seeks to hold top executives accountable for safeguarding the company's digital infrastructure.

Independent Reviews and Executive Bonuses

For the current fiscal year ending June 30, the compensation for senior executives will factor in their cybersecurity performance. An independent third-party review will assist CEO Satya Nadella and the board's compensation committee in these evaluations. Executive pay adjustments will reflect these cybersecurity assessments.

The Department of Homeland Security in April released an assessment following an independent investigation into the Chinese cyber breach affecting email accounts. The investigation was critical of Microsoft and raised concerns over the government's reliance on Microsoft products. The company acknowledged the findings and pledged to make necessary changes to strengthen its security measures.

Last month, Charlie Bell, Executive Vice President for Security at Microsoft, disclosed that senior executives' compensation would be tied to meeting cybersecurity milestones. While details were not fully revealed.

SourceCNBC
Luke Jones
Luke Jones
Luke has been writing about all things tech for more than five years. He is following Microsoft closely to bring you the latest news about Windows, Office, Azure, Skype, HoloLens and all the rest of their products.