H-P's Hurd Offers Regrets

The company's CEO says he should have been more vigilant.
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With several members of

Hewlett-Packard's

(HPQ) - Get Report

top brass scheduled to appear before a Congressional subcommittee Thursday, H-P CEO Mark Hurd acknowledged that he regrets not having asked more questions about the controversial leak investigation that has rocked the company for more than two weeks.

In prepared remarks released by the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Energy and Commerce Wednesday, Hurd described an investigation that spiraled out of control within the Palo Alto, Calif., tech giant.

"The ends came to justify the means. The investigation team became so focused on finding the source of the leaks that they lost sight of the values of this company," said Hurd.

"I am not putting myself above the breakdown that occurred. I wish I had asked more questions," Hurd said.

Hurd, along with former chairwoman Patricia Dunn and H-P General Counsel Ann Baskins will face plenty of questions Thursday when they appear before legislators at a hearing titled "Hewlett-Packard's Pretexting Scandal."

The hearing follows the revelation that private investigators retained by H-P accessed the personal phone records of board members, employees and journalists through surreptitious means including pretexting -- the practice of impersonating an individual to falsely gain access to their personal information.

In their prepared remarks both Hurd and Dunn defended the initial intent of the investigation to put an end to leaks which Dunn described as touching "the very heart of the company's most sensitive issues."

In his testimony, Hurd said H-P's board had a history of leaking company information, including details about negotiations with major suppliers, transactions that were being considered and strategic decisions about the future of the company.