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Hewlett-Packard hires new ethics officer

Jon Hoak replaces Kevin Hunsaker, who faces criminal charges for his role in company's leak probe.

With the company's former ethics officer facing criminal charges, Hewlett-Packard on Thursday hired a replacement to help put an end to spying scandals.

Jon Hoak was named HP's new vice president and chief ethics and compliance officer, the company said in a press release.

Hoak replaces Kevin Hunsaker, a central figure in a probe by the company to find the source of news leaks earlier this year. Last week, Hunsaker and former HP chairman Patricia Dunn were charged with four felonies, including identity theft, after HP acknowledged that some of the company's investigators obtained private phone records.

Hunsaker and Dunn resigned last month, as did two other HP executives. Besides being the subject of a criminal investigation, former HP officials have had to appear before a congressional subcommittee on the leak probe matter and the company faces related scrutiny by the Securities and Exchange Commission.

"HP has traditionally led the industry in adherence to standards of ethics, privacy and corporate responsibility," HP CEO Mark Hurd said in a statement. "With Jon's guidance, we will lead again."

One of Hoak's first duties will be to assist attorneys hired by HP to assess the company's investigative practices.

During its probe, HP investigators tricked phone company employees into turning over private phone records belonging to journalists, employees and HP board directors, the company has acknowledged.

Hoak is the former general counsel for NCR and a former attorney at AT&T.