Hinton had been chairman of News International — the U.K. newspaper arm of Murdoch’s conglomerate — during the years when News of the World journalists and associates allegedly hacked into the voicemail of celebrities, members of the royal family and even victims of crimes.
Murdoch shut down the Sunday tabloid newspaper last week in response to public outcry over the phone-hacking scandal.
News Corp. owns Dow Jones, the Wall Street Journal and many other media properties.
Hinton was one of News Corp.’s most senior executives, and is the most senior person to leave the company over the scandal, the BBC reports. Hinton began as a cub reporter at Australia’s Adelaide News before working his way up in Murdoch’s businesses.
His resignation was announced by the Wall Street Journal and confirmed by Dow Jones.
Rebekah Brooks, chief executive of News International and a former editor of News of the World, resigned on Friday.
In a statement, Hinton said he was "ignorant of what apparently happened" but felt it was right to resign, the BBC says.
He apologized for the pain caused by the actions of News of the World journalists.