Former AWS Veteran Charlie Bell to Head Cybersecurity Ops at Microsoft

By Reuters
Reuters
Reuters
September 16, 2021 Updated: September 16, 2021

Former Amazon.com Inc. cloud executive Charlie Bell said he has joined Microsoft Corp. to lead a newly formed role overseeing cybersecurity operations.

Bell, who will start as an executive vice president, indicated in a LinkedIn post that his role will include dealing with digital fraud, ransomware attacks and with public exposure of private data.

Bell’s appointment comes at a time when Microsoft has been hit hard in terms of cybersecurity shortcomings.

Last week, the company warned some of its Azure cloud computing customers that a major flaw discovered by security researchers could have allowed hackers access to their data.

In late August, security experts at Wiz described a database flaw that also would have allowed one customer to alter another’s data in the Azure cloud platform.

Bell, who long reported to former Amazon Web Services chief Andy Jassy and oversaw the engineering teams working on AWS’s main software services, will report directly to Microsoft Chief Executive Officer Satya Nadella, Bloomberg News said.

Bell began his career as a developer of mini-computer software used in engineering of space shuttle payload mixes. He joined Amazon in 1998 after his startup was acquired by the e-commerce giant.

“I’m thrilled to join Microsoft to take on one of the greatest challenges of our time, leading a newly formed engineering organization: Security, Compliance, Identity, and Management,” Bell wrote in a LinkedIn post.

Bell will start his role officially once “a resolution is reached with his former employer,” Bloomberg added, citing an email from Nadella.

Microsoft spokesperson Frank Shaw, in a statement to Reuters, said, “We’re sensitive to the importance of working through these issues together, as we’ve done when five recent Microsoft executives moved across town to work for Amazon.”

Amazon did not respond to a Reuters request for comment on Bell’s new job.

Reuters