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Avast announces three new appointments to leadership team

Fri 15 Oct 2021

Digital security and privacy company Avast has announced a spate of new appointments across its leadership team, introducing new blood to its threat research, AI and innovation departments. 

Daria Loi will now serve as head of innovation, Siggi Stefnisson as head of threat labs, and Andrew Gardner as vice president of research and AI. All will report to Avast chief technology officer Michael Pechoucek.

“The technology and research & development team supports and helps execute Avast’s vision of making the digital world a more private, free and safe place for everyone,” says Pechoucek.

“The strong leadership of Daria, Siggi and Andrew are of vital importance to make this a reality. I am very excited to have them all on board. 

“With the recent additions, we have excellent leadership that ensures Avast remains at the forefront of threat research, AI, and innovation.”

Incoming head of innovation Daria Loi has extensive experience spanning over two decades in UX research & design, product design & strategy and innovation processes. Loi regularly mixes design strategy with user experience research and innovation in an effort to humanise technology. 

Loi joins Avast from Intel, where she led UX Innovation and drove product vision agenda into Intel’s client computing, AI and smart spaces programs for over 12 years. She has also worked at Mozilla, where she served as head of product design for emerging technologies and head of design & people experiences for almost two years. She is a well-known keynote speaker and was recognised as one of Italy’s 50 most inspiring women in tech.

Siggi Stefnisson joined Avast earlier this year as head of threat labs. He brings over two decades of computer and information security experience to the table, having previously worked as a virus and malware researcher.

Most recently, he held the position of vice president of threat research and detection at Cyren. His team’s main focus lies in developing new analytical capabilities to map, understand and stop new threats in real-time.

Andrew Gardner also joined Avast earlier this year as vice president of research & AI. He joined Avast from Broadcom and has over 20 years of experience in research, artificial intelligence and data science.

He has worked as Global Head of AI and Machine Learning within technology companies previously. He is leading Avast’s over 100 experts dedicated to research and development in artificial intelligence and privacy. 

Gardner is a frequent international keynote speaker and presenter, and a former adjunct professor at the Georgia Institute of Technology.

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