While tech giants from the likes of Apple, Microsoft and Facebook chose to play it safe when Donald Trump won the election, the CEO of San Diego-based cybersecurity firm PacketSled opted for a different approach – and publicly threatened to kill the newly elected Republican candidate on Facebook.
Unfortunately, his brash and aggressive burst of frustration swiftly backfired when the series of threats aimed at the President-elect shortly made it to Reddit and eventually appeared on a number of media outlets, causing PacketSled to place the aggravated CEO on an administrative leave.
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“I’m going to kill the the president-elect,” Matt Harrigan wrote on his personal Facebook page. “[G]etting a sniper rifle and perching myself where it counts. Find a bedroom in the whitehouse that suits you motherfucker. I’ll find you,” the CEO further added.
Harrigan quickly went on to apologize for his remarks in a statement on PacketSled’s website, downplaying the threats merely as a “joke.”
Here’s the full apology:
My recent Facebook comment was intended to be a joke, in the context of a larger conversation, and only privately shared as such. Anyone who knows me, knows that I do not engage in this form of rhetoric with any level of seriousness and the comment most certainly does not represent my real personal views in any regard. I apologize if anything that I said was either taken seriously, was offensive, or caused any legitimate concern.
Best Regards, Matt Harrigan
Harrigan’s apologetic statement has since been removed from PacketSled’s website. Instead, the company put up a new post, notifying that the board of directors has “accepted the resignation of President and CEO Matthew Harrigan, effective immediately.”
“We want to be very clear, PacketSled does not condone the comments made by Mr. Harrigan, which do not reflect the views or opinions of the company, its employees, investors or partners,” the statement further said.
Ironically, PacketSled specializes in “continuously monitor[ing] for advanced threats and policy violations missed by other defenses.”
So in case you want to avoid getting fired over your frustrations with Trump’s presidential triumph: Better refrain from sharing your murderous tendencies on social media.