Apple's security chief leaves

Apple Inc's chief of security operations has left the company just months after the world's largest technology company faced criticism over the tracking down of what has been widely reported as a missing iPhone prototype. The consumer device giant's vice president of global security, John Theriault has retired, a person close to Apple said. Apple declined to comment. Theriault joined Apple after a stint as chief of security at Pfizer Inc, according to his LinkedIn profile. Prior to that, he was a special agent in the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Apple's security team was criticized after two of its members entered the house of a San Francisco resident in the summer to search for a "lost item", thought to to be a prototype of what eventually became the iPhone 4S.

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The company's security staff was accompanied by San Francisco police, who said they did not enter the residence. The police said Apple had tracked the lost item to the house. Apple did not find the item, but the company faced a backlash on the Internet and media after 22-year old Sergio Calderon came forward to say he had let the employees in thinking they were police officers. An attorney for Calderon, David Monroe, said on Friday that his client is in settlement negotiations with Apple and declined to comment further. In 2010, Apple faced similar criticism when investigators raided a technology journalist's home to retrieve an iPhone prototype. The prototype, left by an Apple employee in a bar, had been sold to tech blog Gizmodo.