ASIC commences civil penalty proceedings against REST for misleading and deceptive representations to members

first_imgASIC commences civil penalty proceedings against REST for misleading and deceptive representations to members ASIC has commenced civil penalty proceedings in the Federal Court against Retail Employees Superannuation Pty Ltd (REST), a superannuation trustee, for false or misleading representations made about the ability of its members to transfer their superannuation out of the Retail Employees Superannuation Trust (the Fund).ASIC alleges that, from at least 2 March 2015 to 2 May 2018, REST made representations that discouraged, and in many cases delayed or prevented, members from transferring some or all of their funds to another superannuation fund. ASIC’s case is that these members were denied their lawful rights to superannuation portability and choice of superannuation fund, causing members to suffer financial loss. ASIC further alleges that this conduct resulted in REST retaining a higher level of funds under management than would otherwise have occurred.Specifically, ASIC alleges REST made representations to members who made, or were considering making, full balance transfers to another fund that:if they remained employed by an employer who made contributions to the Fund (REST employer) and that employer continued to make contributions to REST, they were required to keep a minimum balance of $5,000 in their account with the Fund;if they remained employed by their REST employer but their employer was willing to contribute to another fund, members needed an employer declaration stating either the date the employer stopped making contributions to the Fund or confirming the member’s ‘choice of fund rights’ in order to leave the Fund;if they were no longer employed by their REST employer, members needed to obtain a separation certificate or confirmation of their termination date from their employer and provide this to REST before they were able to transfer the full balance of their REST account to another super account.These representations were made both orally and in writing, in general publications and standard forms distributed to members and directly to members making specific requests to transfer their full balance out of the Fund.ASIC alleges that each of these representations were false, misleading or deceptive, or likely to mislead or deceive because, under the Superannuation Industry (Supervision) Act 1993 and associated regulations, REST was not permitted to impose these conditions on transfers out of the Fund.ASIC is seeking declarations, pecuniary penalties, and other orders against REST.The date for the first case management hearing is yet to be scheduled by the Court.DownloadConcise statement (PDF 910 KB)Originating process (PDF 349 KB)BackgroundSuperannuation trustees are required by law to act in the best interests of members. Choice of fund and portability of funds are important rights for members. They allow members to consolidate funds and, among other benefits, to avoid superannuation balance erosion through unnecessary fees and costs. ASIC is concerned that where members are prevented from consolidating, this may lead to increased fees and costs of holding multiple superannuation funds.The Superannuation Industry (Supervision) Act 1993 and associated regulations required REST to process full balance requests within three business days upon receiving specific mandatory information. The law did not allow a trustee to require information about a member’s employment status and whether or not their employer had offered them a choice of fund for future contributions before processing requests.The obligation to process rollovers to another superannuation fund within three days was introduced in 2013 as part of the government’s SuperStream initiative to improve the efficiency of the superannuation system. Prior to this, rolling over and consolidating funds was a lengthy process which often ended in failure. /Public Release. This material comes from the originating organization and may be of a point-in-time nature, edited for clarity, style and length. View in full here. Why?Well, unlike many news organisations, we have no sponsors, no corporate or ideological interests. We don’t put up a paywall – we believe in free access to information of public interest. Media ownership in Australia is one of the most concentrated in the world (Learn more). Since the trend of consolidation is and has historically been upward, fewer and fewer individuals or organizations control increasing shares of the mass media in our country. According to independent assessment, about 98% of the media sector is held by three conglomerates. This tendency is not only totally unacceptable, but also to a degree frightening). Learn more hereWe endeavour to provide the community with real-time access to true unfiltered news firsthand from primary sources. It is a bumpy road with all sorties of difficulties. We can only achieve this goal together. Our website is open to any citizen journalists and organizations who want to contribute, publish high-quality insights or send media releases to improve public access to impartial information. You and we have the right to know, learn, read, hear what and how we deem appropriate.Your support is greatly appreciated. All donations are kept completely private and confidential.Thank you in advance!Tags:ASIC, Australia, Australian Securities and Investments Commission, business, Choice, civil penalty, Download, efficiency, Employees, employment, failure, Federal, federal court, Government, industry, penalty, Retail, superannuationlast_img read more

VDH COVID-19 Update: $12M for child care, fall sports coming back

first_imgCOVID-19 case counts fell last week in all four regions across the nation.Daily Update on Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19)August 7, 2020New information is in red and bold.This update is available online at healthvermont.gov/covid19(link is external)Click the “See the Latest Update” button.Please visit the Vermont Department of Health’s COVID-19 web and data pageshealthvermont.gov/covid19(link is external)Financial Assistance for Child Care ProvidersSaying that good quality child care is critical for Vermont, giving kids a strong foundation for their future, and supporting working families, Governor Phil Scott on Friday announced(link is external) the launch of a new grant program to help mitigate operational expenses and losses for child care providers impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.The Operational Relief Grant (ORG) program includes $12 million in federal Coronavirus Relief Funding to help child care programs offset pandemic-related expenses and losses. Grant applications are open now through August 26.“We are so grateful to the child care workers and programs who have stepped up to provide critical services to children and their families throughout this crisis,” said Governor Scott. “These grant funds will help programs recover and continue expanding the availability of early care and learning for Vermont families.”For more information about the grant program, visit www.dcf.vermont.gov/covid19-relief-grants(link is external).Testing Reaches MilestoneGovernor Scott announced that Vermont has now tested more than 100,000 people for the COVID-19 virus. Of those, 1,448 have tested positive.“Testing and contact tracing have been critical to our reopening strategy and our ongoing ability to detect and contain outbreaks,” said Gov. Scott. Acknowledging the complex efforts to conduct the state’s widespread testing program, the Governor thanked the teams at the state’s public health laboratory and Health Department staff, as well as the Vermont National Guard, state employees and EMS workers who have stood up and managed the pop-up test sites. Gov. Scott said that as other states continue to see surges and long testing turnaround times from overwhelmed national labs, Vermont is focused on maintaining and building our testing capacity “so that we’re always ready to contain outbreaks and protect our most vulnerable.”Health Commissioner Mark Levine, MD echoed the tribute to the Health teams, and noted that while testing is an important tool, he credited the state’s low case rate to the ongoing efforts by Vermonters to stay safe and healthy. “(You) did that by staying home whenever possible, wearing masks out in public, and following other prevention steps to stay healthy,” Dr. Levine said. “It’s not been easy. I know that for many, “caution fatigue” is setting in. And it’s hard to keep the regimen of precautions and handwashing going. But we need to keep it up – because it’s working.”Dr. Levine emphasized that the key “keep Vermont healthy and open” is harm reduction and risk reduction. Noting that most activities have some risk, — with some riskier than others, Dr. Levine urged everyone to think about their choices and the potential health risk to ourselves and the people we with whom we may interact. He also urged everyone to continue to take precautions like mask wearing, to prevent the spread of the virus.People are also encouraged to understand when testing is not needed. You do not need to be tested unless you have reason to believe you’ve been in close contact with some who has the virus, or you have symptoms of COVID, or have increased medical risk.Fall Sports PreviewGov. Scott also said on Friday that his administration is working with the Vermont Principals Association (VPA), the Superintendents Association, school athletic directors and coaches in planning for the start of fall sports “in some fashion.”Sports, including cross-country running, soccer, field hockey, football, cheerleading, volleyball, bass fishing and golf will begin as part of the school yearOne idea floated for football would result in seven-on-seven games with passing only.The VPA will be providing details over the coming weeks, but, Gov. Scott cautioned, students coaches and parents should prepare themselves for a very different year“Things will look different… especially when it comes to high contact sports, the Governor said. “This won’t be a normal season, but our goal is to offer a path forward for each of these sports. To give our kids some sense of normalcy in abnormal times.”Children and MasksHalloween is one thing, but when it comes to preventing the spread of COVID-19 among children, masks are serious business, and one size does not fit all.Face coverings should be worn in settings where children and adults cannot keep a distance of 6 feet between themselves and others. This includes childcare settings, summer camps and schools.The Health Department has a two-page fact sheet(link is external) that gives people the information they need about the use of masks to help protect children.Keeping a 6-foot distance can be hard for kids used to running around and playing with each other. In settings where distancing is a challenge, children ages 2 and older should wear a mask. Make sure the mask size is the right fit and teach kids how to safely put on and remove the mask, as well as instruct them on proper hand washing to stop the spread of germs.Children under the age of 2 should not wear a mask, because it may present a choking hazard, and the youngsters may not be able to communicate that they are having trouble breathing. The unique needs of each child are also a factor. Children who have medical (such as asthma) or developmental reasons for not wearing a face covering, should not be required to do so.Review our Face Coverings for Children fact sheet(link is external) for more information, including safety tips about what masks are appropriate and advice for helping children adapt to mask use.Case InformationCurrent COVID-19 Activity in VermontAs of 12 p.m. on August 7, 2020 Description 30 5,824 Contacts monitored Currently hospitalized 1 1,260 1,004 Number Total cases* Total people recovered 58 People tested 100,962 Deaths+ Hospitalized under investigation People completed monitoring 1,448(2 new) 5 Travelers monitored * Includes testing conducted at the Health Department Laboratory, commercial labs and other public health labs.+ Death occurring in persons known to have COVID-19. Death certificate may be pending. Hospitalization data is provided by the Vermont Healthcare Emergency Preparedness Coalition and is based on hospitals updating this information.Find more at the data dashboard: healthvermont.gov/currentactivity(link is external). Getting Tested for COVID-19Not everyone needs to be tested for COVID-19. Use CDC’s Self-Checker tool(link is external) to find out if you should be tested.If you think you may need to get tested, talk with your health care provider, or call 2-1-1 if you don’t have a provider and need to be connected to care.If you do need testing, look for a clinic or pharmacy that offers testing near you, or register at a pop-up location.See how to get tested and to make an appointment(link is external).Guidance for VermontersIf you are having a medical emergency, call 9-1-1 or go to the hospital.If you are having even mild symptoms of COVID-19(link is external), call your health care provider.Maintain physical distancing of at least 6 feet and wear a mask when near others(link is external).Get the information you need at our Frequently Asked Questions(link is external).New question added: Can I travel to Canada?New on healthvermont.gov(link is external)This week’s Weekly Summary of Vermont COVID-19 Data(link is external) has been posted, with a spotlight on how long-term care facilities have been impacted and what has been done to support them. In the first two weeks of April, the Health Department conducted comprehensive assessments with 36 nursing homes and 14 assisted living residences to assess and improve their preparedness for responding to COVID-19.Traveler InformationStay up to date on guidance, recommendations and requirements associated with travel to Vermont(link is external).  The graph below indicates how non-quarantine regions fell as economies in the region opened-up. However, regional and national data for active case counts have gotten better over the last week.Take Care of Your Emotional and Mental HealthIf you or someone you know is in crisis or needs emotional support, help is available 24/7:Call your local mental health crisis line(link is external). Call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline(link is external) at 1-800-273-8255.Text VT to 741741 to talk with someone at the Crisis Text Line(link is external).Visit healthvermont.gov/suicide(link is external).Get self-help tips and connect to mental health services at COVID Support VT(link is external).See ways for Coping with Stress(link is external). For more information:COVID-19 health information, guidance and case data: healthvermont.gov/covid19(link is external).Governor’s actions: governor.vermont.gov/covid19response(link is external).The state’s modeling: dfr.vermont.gov/about-us/covid-19/modeling(link is external).last_img read more

Structures move through Seville

first_imgEngineering specialist PHB Weserhütte, part of TSK, manufactured the equipment, which needed to be delivered to Canada. Measuring 58 m long and weighing more than 350 tons (317.5 tonnes), the pieces were loaded onto the multipurpose vessel Klara at the port’s Armament Dock. After crossing the Panama Canal, the pieces will arrive in Vancouver. Noatum Logistics handled the project with the support of its two subsidiaries: its specialist project cargo division Actanis Project Cargo, which designed the logistics solution; and Marmedsa Noatum Maritime, which was the ship’s consignee company. Other logistics operators from the port of Seville also participated in the operation, including Carbón Puerto, which has carried out the stowage; as well as staff from the Port Authority of Seville who assisted with the navigation of the dock. www.noatumlogistics.com www.actanis.com portal.apsevilla.comlast_img read more

South Africa’s global reputation steady

first_imgFNB Stadium, also known as Soccer City, is located in the Soweto area of Johannesburg, South Africa. South Africa’s standing in the culture category remains its strongest asset. In this category the country scored highly on sporting excellence. (Image: Gauteng Film Commission) The Storms River mouth in the Tsitsikamma National Park in the Eastern Cape province is one of the country’s most beautiful areas. South Africa is particularly well known for its natural beauty and received its best ranking from 11 out of the 20 panel countries on this measure. (Image: MediaClubSouthAfrica.com. For more free photos visit the image library) MEDIA CONTACTS • Petrus de Kock   Brand South Africa   +27 11 483 0122 RELATED ARTICLES • New slogan for Brand South Africa • Building a thriving African brand • Brand leadership award for SA • ‘Don’t underestimate South Africans’ Wilma den HartighSouth Africa’s overall global reputation has remained steady for the second consecutive year, maintaining its 36th position out of 50 nations under review in the latest Anholt-GfK Roper Nation Brands Index (NBI), an annual survey which measures global opinions of various developing and developed countries across the world.This is a significant achievement for South Africa as the findings come at a time when two thirds of the surveyed countries, some which are considered the world’s most highly regarded nations, suffered declines in their reputation over the past year.South Africa’s stable position as a nation brand is important because the way a country is perceived can make a major difference to the success of its business, trade and tourism efforts, as well as its diplomatic and cultural relations with other nations.Dr Petrus de Kock, research manager at Brand South Africa, says the country’s inclusion in the report is recognition of South Africa’s position in global economic and political systems.De Kock says that promoting the country is not only the job of the government. “The way South Africans speak about their country and relate to others also plays a role when shaping perceptions,” he says.The Anholt survey is conducted annually – approximately 20 000 people are interviewed in 20 core panel countries, one of which is South Africa. They consist of major developed and developing nations that play a key role in international relations, trade, the flow of business, cultural and tourism activities.The respondents rate 50 countries on questions in six categories, namely exports, governance, culture, people, tourism and immigration/investment. The index measures the power and appeal of each country’s ‘brand image’ by examining its competence in these categories.Top achieversThe US retained the top spot for the fourth year in a row, as the nation with the best overall reputation, followed by Germany (2nd), UK (3rd), France (4th), Canada (5th), Japan (6th), Italy (7th), Switzerland (8th), Australia (9th) and Sweden in 10th position.NBI founder Simon Anholt, in his analysis of the results, said in a statement that with a few exceptions, developed nations, ranking among the top 20, have registered some of the biggest score losses.“Put simply, the world likes the world a bit less than it did last year,” Anholt said.Most countries that achieved higher scores in 2012 have come from emerging regions, with the highest gains for the United Arab Emirates, Turkey, Kenya, and Poland.No small feat for South AfricaSouth Africans provided high rankings in the people, tourism and culture categories, but are more critical about areas such as governance and immigration/Investment.The latter refers to a country’s ability to attract talent and capital, its economic prosperity, equal opportunity, and the perception that it is a place with a high quality of life. The country’s economic and business conditions are also measured.GovernanceThe report notes that South Africa faces the greatest difficulty in the area of governance, with South Africans being more critical of their government in 2012.Although South Africans’ overall score for their own country in this area declined, the country recorded some gains in this area, outdoing its Brics partners, India and Russia, in this category.Tourism, culture, peopleSouth Africa moved ahead of Russia, South Korea and China in the people category, which measures people’s friendliness by whether respondents would feel welcome when visiting the country.According to the report South Africans are admired across most panel countries for their welcoming nature, especially when it comes to wanting someone from South Africa as a close friend.The cultural reputation of a nation is considered to be among the most volatile of all indices, but South Africa’s standing in the culture category remains its strongest asset, being ranked 28th. In this category the country scored highly on sporting excellence (16th), but is somewhat less known for its culture – both contemporary (34th) and historic (33th).South Africa’s rank of 34 for tourism is the same as last year. The country, which is particularly well known for its natural beauty (15th), received its best ranking from 11 out of the 20 panel countries on this measure.The study found that international travellers, defined as people who have visited at least one foreign country, are the most positive toward South Africa. Travellers view South Africa as a tourist destination, which is also an appealing place to live and work.However, they also note that it is a creative place that contributes to technology, produces quality products and offers both investment and educational opportunities.Selecting the countriesThe list of 50 nations is based on their political and economic importance in global geopolitics and the flow of trade, businesses, people and tourism activities. Regional representation and the diversity of political and economic systems are also taken into consideration.The panel countries are: Western Europe/North America, which includes the US, Canada, the UK, Germany, France, Italy and Sweden; Central and Eastern Europe including Russia, Poland and Turkey; Japan, China, India, South Korea and Australia comprise the Asia-Pacific category; Argentina, Brazil and Mexico as part of Latin America; and the Middle East/Africa panel, which includes Egypt and South Africa.• Slideshow image courtesy of Gauteng Film Commissionlast_img read more

FAA warns against counter-drone systems

first_imgThe US Federal Aviation Administration has warned airports against installing systems designed to disable a drone because of the potential risk to aircraft and air traffic control services.The US regulator is happy to help airports install detection systems but does not want them using technology designed to bring down drones.The statement is in response to increasing worries at airports and airlines about the impact of the growing number of unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) and incidents of illegal use near airports.The issue grabbed international headlines in late 2018 when Gatwick Airport was shut down by illegal drone activity during the busy pre-Christmas period.The airport was shut down over three days and the travel plans of 140,000 people were disrupted after reports of illegal drones.Since then there have been other reports globally of drones near aerodromes — Dubai airport was briefly closed in February because of a suspected sighting — and some airports and countries such as Australia have been trialing drone detection technology.A number of countries are also introducing rules that require users to register drones.READ: Aussie tets help FAA approval of US drone deliveries.The FAA said it understood and shared airport safety and security concerns raised by the malicious or errant use of drones.It said it was continuing to work closely with airport operators who were considering detection systems or had already done so.It had already provided important information and expected to supplement this “as we refine our processes and procedures for safe UAS detection system use and coordinated operational response at or around airports”.“The FAA also provided information regarding the prohibition on the use of non-federal counter-UAS technologies at or around airports,’’ it said.“These systems could pose an aviation safety risk by interfering with aircraft navigation and air navigation services.“The FAA does not support the use of counter-UAS systems by any entities other than federal departments with explicit statutory authority to use this technology, including requirements for extensive coordination with the FAA to ensure safety risks are mitigated.”last_img read more

Five Recommendations to Power-Up Employee Communication Trending

first_imgHow would you like to keep track of trending topics within your distributed workforce at any given moment in time? This valuable tool would give the chief human resource officer the ability to apprise the CEO of internal workforce trends.  Important workforce and operational decisions could be made quickly by taking advantage of this Internet technology. Having served as a chief human resource officer for a large private energy company located in several countries, the ability to keep track of trending workforce and operational issues would have made the employee survey process, including flash surveys, look like the Pony Express.  I think we can agree that real time information is extremely valuable. Twitter is a company that has tapped the power of instantaneous information. Twitter users can Tweet micro-blogs with up to 140 characters to followers quickly and easily. According to Dick Costolo, Twitter CEO, on BusinessInsider.com in September 2011, Twitter had 100 million users, 400 million monthly unique visitors, up to 230 million tweets sent per day, and three million websites had the Tweet button on their sites. Twitter users now spread news and information instantaneously around the world in seconds. During recent major international events, political unrest and natural disasters, Twitter has been the source of instantaneous news for media and the digital population. So how does micro-blogging relate to the C-Suite? If you want to understand your workforce and your operation on a daily basis, we must rid ourselves of social media paranoia.  Social media will evolve and likely become faster, better, cheaper, easier, while increasing the numbers of savvy participants on this worldwide digitized communication platform. Below are five recommendations to power-up employee communication trending within your organization: Determine your digital communication platform. Share company information frequently. Listen to employee comments and operational trends. Initiate changes based upon feedback and trends. Embrace the benefits freedom of communication brings.last_img read more

Is Your Approach to Network Device Security Sufficiently Middle of the Road?

first_imgSponsored by Axis CommunicationsAttitudes toward the cyber risk posed by network devices can vary substantially. Some organizations don’t give it much thought. They plow ahead, adding this or that device to the network without much consideration. They may not even bother to change the default password on their new IP camera. At the other extreme is hysteria, facilitated by horror stories and fanciful hypotheticals that gain traction in the media. Retail professionals in this camp could shy away from adding security devices to the network–out of concerns for security.So who’s right?- Sponsor – Neither, suggests John Bartolac, cyber security expert and senior manager for cyber strategy at Axis Communications, a leading provider of IP-based products and solutions.Smart, connected products represent a real opportunity for retailers and loss prevention practitioners. Effective use of these devices can cut expenses, improve operational efficiency, enhance safety, reduce loss, and drive business. But connected devices aren’t risk-free. “Connected devices offer great benefits, but you need to be sure these things are protected,” said Bartolac. If not deployed and maintained properly, network devices can become threat vectors for cyber instrusions, such as a botnet attack.However, while the risk is legitimate, it doesn’t outweigh the value that can be leveraged from connected devices. “You have to look at the risk, absolutely. But you shouldn’t panic or let fear paralyze you and miss out—you just need to account for the risk when you add devices,” said Bartolac.Essentially, LP should embrace the opportunities but be diligent when deploying solutions, he suggested.The risk is something that retailers have started to recognize. “I’m seeing retailers making themselves more aware of the risks, probably because of the marriage of LP with IT,” said Bartolac. “They are starting to look into what kinds of things can create risk and what kinds of solutions are appropriate, especially as systems are getting more complex.”For years, the most retailers worried about with respect to a surveillance camera was whether it was mistakenly positioned to capture customer cardholder information. “However, now that it’s a network device that can be the subject of attack, you need to take those possibilities into consideration,” said Bartolac. “Imagine what a day without online sales could do a retailer. It is devastating.”It’s an important recognition. “When you look at IP cameras, they really are acting like a server on the network,” said Bartolac. “It’s necessary to take many of the same precautions to protect a camera as a network.”At the outset, it’s critical for LP to evaluate the security of a security device as closely they do other criteria, such as compatibility, features, and price. Bartolac noted that not all manufacturers of network security devices are designed for security, and there is no guarantee—if a flaw is found—that the manufacturer will roll out a timely fix. Often, even basic security precautions are ignored in the manufacture and installation of security devices. Additionally, not all vendors do the same amount of testing.Consequently, choosing trusted manufacturers and integrators is critical, as is working exclusively with vendors that offer a roadmap for security. Axis, for example, provides a hardening guide for its network security devices, such as IP cameras.It may also be helpful to resist having your heart set on specific products when entering a project, as doing so can lead to overlooking vulnerabilities. It’s also important to develop internal technology expertise so that your LP team is capable of asking all the necessary questions. Finally, Bartolac says it’s helpful to establish best practices for low, medium, or high device protection, and to then follow the appropriate level depending on the level of risk associated with a specific device.It’s not just dodgy manufacturers or lackadaisical integrators that can be the source of risk. Retailers, too, can be guilty of failing to take even basic protections. “One of the most important security measures is the most basic—it’s passwords and the management of passwords,” said Bartolac. “It blows my mind that some companies will keep out-of-box passwords for every device and never change them.” Default passwords for IP devices are typically easy to guess and even published online, and offer an easy and frequently used avenue for cyber criminals to gain unauthorized access to a retailer’s system. Effective ways to leverage passwords to stop attacks are to set strong, unique passwords; ensure good password management; use certificates in lieu of passwords; and to change passwords on a regular basis.What are some of the other actions that retailers and LP pros should take? Bartolac and Axis offer some valuable best practices:Deploy and install devices in the recommended way. By disabling unused services and only installing trusted applications reduces the chances that a would-be perpetrator could exploit a system vulnerability. Also, place cameras where they’re out of reach of a potential attacker’s tampering.Use a principle of “least privileged accounts.” This means limiting users to only the resources they need to perform their job.To reduce exposure, prohibit direct camera access from any device that accesses video, unless it is required by the solution. Clients should only access video through a video management system or a media proxy.Adhere to a well-documented maintenance plan, and keep network devices current with firmware and security updates.Work closely with your entire supply chain of vendors to understand possible threats to your network in using your selected devices. Remember to understand the system as a whole, not just each individual device. In a truly integrated system, the devices will need to speak to each other.Ideally, all devices should fit into your IT policy on their own as well as when configured to work together.Make sure your systems are using at least of one the common authentication protocols: HTTP digest authentication and HTTPS. This ensures that all information is encrypted before being sent across the network.Technology is moving fast, and it is natural to be excited by the value that network connected devices can provide LP and retail organizations. And while the risks should not dissuade LP practitioners from pursuing those solutions, “they have to do their due diligence,” said Bartolac. Stay UpdatedGet critical information for loss prevention professionals, security and retail management delivered right to your inbox.  Sign up nowlast_img read more

Retail ORC and Law Enforcement Investigators Gather in Atlanta for “Last” GRAORCA Conference

first_imgNearly 400 loss prevention investigators and their law enforcement partners from the greater Atlanta region met to network and hear multiple keynote speakers and retail case studies at the 8th annual Georgia Retail Association Organized Retail Crime Alliance (GRAORCA) conference at the downtown Hyatt Regency on Wednesday, August 29.The event began with welcome remarks from Georgia Senator Tyler Harper and Fulton County District Attorney Paul Howard. In his remarks, Howard told the audience that he is asking to hire a full-time assistant DA and a dedicated investigator to focus totally on reducing retail crime. If his budget request is granted, his office plans to create programs with the goal of reducing retail crime by 10 percent, reduce ORC by 20 percent, and increase prosecutions by 20 percent by the end of 2019.Three keynote speakers addressed the audience throughout the day. The morning speaker was Kimberly Overton, the chief resource prosecutor for the North Carolina Conference of District Attorneys. She provided an energetic presentation on the four types of ways people learn and the importance of matching your communication style to the person you are trying to influence.- Sponsor – The mid-day keynote was offered by Tom Meehan, CSO and CISO for Controltek and retail technology editor for LP Magazine, who gave an overview of tools and techniques for accessing the dark web for investigations.Describing her afternoon keynote as “not a typical keynote,” Judge Glenda Hatchett, who is well known for the reality court TV program Judge Hatchett, gave a moving talk about “finding your purpose and passion.”One highlight of the day was the presentation by Target of the GRAORCA Partnership of the Year award to Detective Jesus Maldonado of the Dunwoody Police Department.There were multiple breakout sessions throughout the day on a variety of topics. Two sessions that stood out focused on retail ORC investigation case studies. Patrick Fairley Sr., ORC investigator for the Southern division of Home Depot, described details of a year-long investigation of a box-stuffing theft ring that hit more than 90 Home Depot stores in Florida and Georgia. Tim Huff, director of ORC investigations, and Marcelo Bravo, ORC manager, described Macy’s use of RFID for asset protection and “shortage avoidance” that has produced significant ROI.The day ended with Chad McManus, CFE, CFI, LPC, field loss prevention manager for T-Mobile and chair of the Georgia Retailers Association LP committee, telling the attendees that the GRAORCA organization name has officially changed to the Georgia Retailers Organized Crime Alliance or GROC (pronounced GEE-rock).Despite the name change, the organization will continue its mission of promoting retailer-law enforcement partnership to reduce organized retail crime in Georgia and the Southeast. Details about next year’s conference will be announced at a later date. Stay UpdatedGet critical information for loss prevention professionals, security and retail management delivered right to your inbox.  Sign up nowlast_img read more

Big Data: Data and Analytics Enable the Electric Power SmartGrid

first_imgSituational AwarenessInformation VisualizationPredictive and Forecasting Activities The vision of the industry is that with the help of Big Data analytics, the power system can evolve so that all aspects of the system can be better integrated and ultimately automated.  An article authored by EPRI analysts Doug Dorr, Christina Haddad, Alberto Del Rosso describes a power system in twelve years time that will be “more like the plug and play concept of secure computer networks that can instantly recognize and securely configure all connected devices – while simultaneously enabling customers to optimize settings for their electronic equipment.”Because of new technologies like Big Data Analytics, EPRI expects that the power grid/smargrid of the future will be both more efficient and more reliable. How are industries beginning to apply the capabilities that Big Data can offer?  One example is how Big Data and the SmartGrid is changing the Electric Power industry.A recent survey of executives in the electric industry by the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI)  found interest in the following applications of Big Data:last_img read more

COSCO Shipping Closes Another Dormant Business

first_imgzoom COSCO Shipping International (Singapore) has decided to formally dismiss its dormant subsidiary, Cos Knight Shipping.As informed, a resolution for the dissolution of the company incorporated in the Republic of Panama was presented to the business registry of Panama and Cos Knight Shipping has been dissolved.The move follows the scrapping of a vessel owned by Cos Knight Shipping, the Supramax bulk carrier Cos Knight.“The dissolution of Cos Knight Shipping is not expected to have any material impact on the net tangible assets and earnings per share of the company for the financial year ending December 31, 2017,” the company said, adding that none of the directors or controlling shareholders of the company has any interest in the dissolution of Cos Knight Shipping.COSCO Shipping International decided to shut down a number of dormant subsidiaries in 2017.In the first nine months of this year, the company sent six of its bulkers to the scrapyard, reducing its fleet to four Handymax carriers.Separately, COSCO Shipping International said it sent a formal offer document to the shareholders of Cogent Holdings Limited (CHL), a Singapore-based company specializing in logistics management services. COSCO intends to acquire all the issued shared in the capital of CHL.last_img read more