Facebook says its chief product officer is leaving

Facebook Inc. said on Thursday that Chief Product Officer Chris Cox is leaving, the highest-ranking executive to depart since the social-media giant became embroiled in crisis last year.

Cox is leaving following Facebook’s decision to shift the direction of its future products to focus more on encryption. “This will be a big project and we will need leaders who are excited to see the new direction through,” he said in a statement.

Cox was a critical executive at Facebook, working there for more than a decade, helping design and run the news feed and then rising in the ranks to oversee all product at Facebook. He also gives the company’s orientation to new hires every Monday morning.

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