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Tim Mottershead promoted to Senior Manager - Regional Asset Protection for DSW Designer Shoe Warehouse

Tim has been with DSW for nearly three years, starting with the company in 2019. Before his promotion to Senior Manager - Regional Asset Protection, he served as Regional Asset Protection Manager - Northeast for the company. Prior to joining DSW, he served as Executive Team Leader Asset Protection for Target. Earlier in his career, he held LP roles with Burlington Stores and Macy's. Congratulations, Tim!

See All the Executives 'Moving Up' Here   |   Submit Your New Corporate Hires/Promotions or New Position




Interface "Ask Our Expert" video series

What is POS Exception Reporting?

Jim Mack, VP Products and Solutions, Interface Security Systems, explains how Point of Sale (POS) Exception Reporting solutions can help retail chains and restaurants identify internal theft and opportunities to train employees. He also talks about how the ROI from POS exception reporting can be further improved when integrated with security cameras. 

To learn more about POS exception reporting, please visit https://interfacesystems.com/business-intelligence/pos-exception-reporting/

The U.S. Crime Surge
The Retail Impact

Lawmakers Criticize DOJ for 'Turning Blind Eye' to Retail Theft
Republicans urge Attorney General to crackdown on retail crime
Linking retail crime to organized crime and denouncing it as exploding across American cities, 16 Republican representatives wrote to United States Attorney General Merrick Garland this week, demanding a national strategy and fight against both.

"One of the essential functions of our government is to provide security to all citizens," U.S. Rep. Ken Buck (CO), one of the letter's co-signers, said separately. "Yet despite the continued increase in retail crime, the DOJ has turned a blind eye and refused to act. I urge Attorney General Garland to develop a strategy to reduce retail crime, maintain the rule of law, and protect our civil liberties."

The lawmakers cited news reports that retailers have faced around $45 billion in annual losses, despite efforts from state and local authorities. Likewise, last year, a National Retail Federation (NRF) survey determined that 65 percent of respondents indicated that theft was coming more from gangs, who were consequently showcasing more violence and aggression than in previous years. Still, that same report also noted that 18 percent of respondents saw the opposite: a reduction in threats from a year earlier. Further, a third of respondents said that employee theft was down, with similar figures reported for shoplifting.

The lawmakers' letter also pointed to the rise of online commerce platforms as a major driver of modern theft, causing multijurisdictional hassles that often cross state lines and causing a unique challenge for local authorities.

"Building on other Members drawing attention to this issue and the success of Operation Booster Buster, I urge the Justice Department to take action and develop a national strategy to address the alarming rise in organized retail crime," the lawmakers wrote.

Operation Booster Buster was a joint sting effort from the U.S. Attorney's Office, the Oklahoma Attorney General's Office, Tulsa Police Department, Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), and IRS Criminal Investigation, targeting retail theft. homelandprepnews.com

Shoplifting Is Becoming More Violent & Aggressive
Retail theft on the rise & shoplifters are becoming more aggressive, CMPD says
The Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department said that some criminals are shoplifting as a way to make a living. The agencies' detectives said they are cracking down on organized theft rings. CMPD said suspects often sell stolen goods from places like Lowe's, Home Depot and Walmart on social media sites, including Facebook Marketplace.

So far this year, CMPD said its Organized Retail Theft Task Force has investigated more than two dozen cases. In one recent joint operation with the Cabarrus County Sheriff's Office, CMPD said authorities caught a 33-year-old man accused of stealing more than $250,000 in power tools from retail stores across the Carolinas.

The man, Steven Vanderburg, and several other co-conspirators connected to the thefts, were arrested in the investigation, CMPD said. About $82,000 in cash, approximately $50,000 in new tools and three vehicles were seized by police. CMPD officers warned many of the alleged shoplifters are becoming more violent.

Last month, police say a shoplifting suspect assaulted a security guard at a south Charlotte Lowe's store. The guard then chased the suspects and shot at them. She has since been charged with shooting into an occupied vehicle. CMPD said it was checking to see if any of the recent investigations were connected to that theft ring. Many of the suspects are career criminals, police say.

"I'm all about giving second chances to people, but after 87 times, that becomes a career criminal," CMPD Detective Anthony Finocchio said. "How are they out still victimizing individuals and the retailers and all the other crimes that are occurring?" yahoo.com

Another State Proposes ORC Law
Minnesota bill aims to deter organized retail theft

One lawmaker wants Minnesota to join 34 other states that have statutes criminalizing organized retail crime.

Senate Bill 3487 aims to establish the crime of organized theft, which is when a person or a group coordinates looting merchandise from a retailer to resell or return to the retailer.

"This bill will have an important impact on distinguishing between common petty shoplifting and organized crime," Limmer said. "My hope is that this bill will provide prosecutors and law enforcement an updated tool to help address the theft going on at retailers of all sizes across Minnesota."

In addition, receiving stolen retail merchandise with intent to resell and possessing shoplifting-related devices with the intent to shoplift would be violations.

This bill seeks enhanced penalties for violations that create a reasonably foreseeable risk of bodily harm to others and allows aggregation of the value of retail merchandise stolen in six months for charging purposes.

The Minnesota Retailers Association and the Minnesota Organized Retail Crime Association support the bill. kpvi.com

Using Tech to Reduce Crime by 42%
South Fulton using technology-driven policing to reduce crime

Chief says CompStat helps department know where to put its manpower

While many cities across the nation are grappling with skyrocketing crime rates, one city in metro Atlanta is enjoying a three-year run during which its crime numbers have plunged more than 40%.

South Fulton recently announced a 17% drop in serious crime in 2021. It was the third year in a row the city has seen a double-digit drop, according to police statistics.

The city's serious crime rate, which includes murders, rapes, robberies, aggravated assaults, burglaries, larcenies and auto theft, fell 16% in 2019 and dropped another 17% in 2020. Since 2018, the year the police department was established, South Fulton has seen an overall 41.5% reduction, according to statistics.

Officials in South Fulton's police department attribute the success to the use of "CompStat," a metrics system introduced by the New York Police Department in 1994 that relies heavily on statistics. The computerized model became a cornerstone of the Big Apple's drastic decline in crime in the 1990s.

New tools for police

The way it works in South Fulton is an officer crunches the crime stats and gathers analytics each week, looking for trends in criminal activity that police can use to anticipate patterns. The officer puts together a weekly CompStat report on calls and results that allows command staff to track details like the time of day, day of the week and street address where incidents occur.

The data is shown on maps to illustrate hot spots and peak times, which police leaders discuss in weekly meetings. They use the intel to deploy manpower for the week. Many law enforcement agencies around the nation have adopted the process. ajc.com

Comparing Progressive DA Crime Policies
Is San Francisco's Chesa Boudin really the most 'radical' DA in America?
San Francisco DA Chesa Boudin is lumped in with a cohort that includes George Gascón in Los Angeles, Kim Foxx in Chicago and Larry Krasner in Philadelphia, a group called the "Soros-funded DAs" by critics.

But is Boudin really more radical than the other three? SFGATE dug into the policy records of each of the four district attorneys and found that while the four are quite similar, subtle differences do exist.

Chesa Boudin - Chesa Boudin took office in January 2020, and his primary policy initiatives have been eliminating cash bail and reducing the city's prison population. He has sought to achieve the latter goal by diverting more offenders to mental health and substance abuse programs instead of pursuing convictions and incarceration. An analysis from the San Francisco Chronicle found that Boudin has increased diversion rates for assault, robbery and drug cases and decreased convictions of the same crimes.

George Gascón - San Francisco's recent trend of increased diversion rates and lower conviction rates began under George Gascón, who served as San Francisco's district attorney between 2011 from 2019 before taking the same position in Los Angeles in 2020.

Kim Foxx - A Chicago Tribune analysis showed that Foxx is dropping felony charges at a higher rate than her predecessor, and that unlike Boudin, Foxx is pursuing conviction for violent crimes such as murder and aggravated battery less frequently than her predecessor did. It's worth noting that generally, district attorney charging rates in Cook County are higher than they are in San Francisco, so Foxx's office dropping more violent crime charges than her predecessor does not necessarily mean she's "softer on violent crime" than Boudin is.

Larry Krasner - Krasner assumed office as district attorney of Philadelphia in January 2018, and like Boudin, Gascón and Foxx, has sought to reduce his jurisdiction's jail population by pursuing diversion and shorter sentences. On several policy areas, however, Krasner contrasts from all three DAs. Krasner campaigned on abolishing cash bail, and while he is now requiring cash bail in very few cases, he technically has not ended the practice, putting him closer in line with Gascon than Boudin. chron.com

Where is Crime & Violence Surging Most? Not California & New York
California & New York under fire for soaring crime - but southern states have highest murder rates in the country
Republicans have repeatedly blamed progressive policies in big cities for a rise in murder rates during the pandemic. But the cities and states that get the most crime coverage - namely California and New York - aren't actually the places where violence is surging the most, according to data from Third Way.

Critics have repeatedly pointed to Democrats' supposed "soft-on-crime" approach, bail reform laws, and "defund the police" rhetoric from left-wing activists for fueling a surge in violent crime. But the Third Way report shows that the highest murder rates were found in states like Mississippi, Kentucky, Alabama, South Carolina and Arkansas.

Mississippi had by far the highest murder rate at 20.5 murders per 100,000 residents, followed by Louisiana at 15.79. Alabama, Kentucky and Missouri all had murder rates higher than 14 per 100,000 compared to a national average of 6.5.

New York's rate was 4.11 murders per 100,000 residents and California's was 5.59. According to the study, Mississippi's murder rate was 400% higher than New York's and 250% higher than California's. salon.com

This Database Stores the DNA of 31,000 New Yorkers. Is It Illegal?
A database used by the New York Police Department violates state law and the Constitution, the Legal Aid Society contends in a lawsuit.


COVID Update

559.2M Vaccinations Given

US: 81.5M Cases - 1M Dead - 63.8M Recovered
Worldwide: 478.3M Cases - 6.1M Dead - 413.2M Recovered

Former Senior Loss Prevention Executive
Know of any fallen LP exec? Let's remember & recognize.

Private Industry Security Guard Deaths: 354   Law Enforcement Officer Deaths: 737
*Red indicates change in total deaths

Will the U.S. Avoid Another Wave?
COVID cases fall by 22% as Europe Surges
New COVID cases continue to fall across the U.S., even as a new version of Omicron spreads quickly in other parts of the world. Nationwide, the U.S. is now averaging roughly 29,000 new COVID cases per day - a 22% drop over the past two weeks.

Kansas and Nebraska have the lowest case rates in the country, each with an average of just two new cases per 100,000 people. Case rates were highest in Kentucky and Alaska. Deaths have dropped to an average of roughly 1,000 a day, down 26% from more than 1,300 deaths a day two weeks ago.

What we're watching: Europe is experiencing a new wave, driven by a highly contagious Omicron subvariant, but many experts say the U.S. probably won't get hit as hard. "I don't really see, unless something changes dramatically, that there will be a major surge," NIAID director Anthony Fauci told the Washington Post Tuesday. axios.com

Fallout from Retail Exec's Resignation Over COVID Views
She Was a Candidate to Lead Levi's. Then She Started Tweeting.
Before 2020, Jennifer Sey, a top executive at Levi Strauss & Company and a leading candidate to be the company's next leader, barely used social media. Two years later, Ms. Sey was out of a job, in part, in her telling, because of her activity on Twitter.

Ms. Sey's unusual exit last month from Levi's after more than 20 years generated a flurry of headlines, with her claiming in a widely circulated essay that her advocacy for school reopenings during the pandemic made her a pariah at work and ultimately led to her ouster. The vast majority of Ms. Sey's tweets were about schools, but some of them criticized guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and Dr. Anthony S. Fauci, whom she accused of fear mongering.

She also expressed skepticism about the effectiveness of masking, mostly for young children. ("Currently there is not enough evidence for or against the use of masks (medical or other) for healthy individuals in the wider community," she posted in May 2020.)

Ms. Sey's outspokenness drew criticism both inside and outside the company, including threats of boycotts. The tweets came when Levi's was using public health guidance to manage protocols across hundreds of stores and in distribution centers. But Ms. Sey said she was speaking as a concerned mother, not a corporate executive. She also noted that Levi's had not previously complained when she posted on social media in support of Democratic politicians like Senator Elizabeth Warren or more liberal causes.

Levi's disputes Ms. Sey's account of events, including her claims that she was punished because her views veered from "left-leaning orthodoxy" and that she walked away from a $1 million severance package in order to be able speak freely about the company. Levi's said Ms. Sey had quit rather than negotiate an exit package, which would have contained a nondisclosure agreement. It "would not contain a prohibition on the executive speaking out about matters of public interest such as school closures or on engaging in any legally protected speech," Kelly McGinnis, the senior vice president of corporate affairs at Levi's, said in a statement. nytimes.com

Vax Mandate for Cops Remains Active
NYC police union heads feel snubbed by lifting of vax mandate for athletes
New York police union leaders were left fuming after reports that the city would ease its COVID-19 vaccine mandate for unvaxxed athletes, a move one labor head said would be "hypocritical."

Mayor Eric Adams is expected to announce Thursday a reversal of his private-sector policy so that anti-vaccine stars like the Brooklyn Nets' Kyrie Irving can compete at home, and big time musicians and performers can play in Big Apple venues.

But labor leaders took the move as a slight on the city's cops and other workers, many of whom have ended up axed because they refused to get jabbed.

"I'm not surprised," Lou Turco, president of the Lieutenants Benevolent Association, told The Post. "To me it's hypocritical that you're allowing an athlete not to get vaccinated but you're going to force officers to get vaccinated to keep their jobs."

Paul DiGiacomo, president of the Detectives' Endowment Association, said Adams "must be kidding" with the change. "Talented detectives with irreplaceable experience were lost because of the mandate," DiGiacomo said. "Athletes and performers more important during a crime wave than NYPD detectives?" nypost.com

Retail's Return to Normal Continues
Build-A-Bear Parties Return Following Two-Year COVID-19 Hiatus
Build-A-Bear Workshop is celebrating the return of in-store parties, which were shut down for two years during the COVID-19 pandemic. The retailer, which announced last year that it was upgrading its ecommerce experience, has another reason to celebrate this year: its 25th anniversary.

"Our 25th Anniversary year is the perfect time to celebrate at Build-A-Bear and we are thrilled to be re-launching parties in Workshop locations around the world after a two-year hiatus," said Sharon Price John, President and CEO of Build-A-Bear Workshop in a statement.

At the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, Build-A-Bear announced that more than 90% of its workforce would be placed on unpaid leave while the employees' medical, dental and vision benefits remained available. Most workers who were not furloughed saw pay cuts, while executive officers' base pay was cut by 20%. Non-employee board director cash compensation was eliminated for Q1 2020. retailtouchpoints.com

UK retail sales fall in February as Covid restrictions ease
UK retail sales fell by 0.3% in Feb. as online sales fell and stormy weather deterred shoppers.

NPD: Restaurant traffic rises year-over-year as COVID fades

Poland abolishing practically all COVID-19 restrictions


The Great Retail Disruption: Decades in the Making?
Op-Ed: How Retail's Bad Practices Weaken the West

Geopolitical events have disrupted retail, but retail has also contributed to geopolitical disruption, writes Doug Stephens.

The early days of the pandemic provided the retail industry with a brutal lesson in the dark side of free trade. As Asia reeled from Covid-19, retailers in the West wrestled with a tangled knot of supply chain disruptions and empty warehouses. In a matter of weeks, 40 years of offshoring production by Western companies came screaming back to bite them and the consumers who depend on them.

How big is the issue? In February of 2020, former Macy's chief executive Terry Lundgren told CNBC, "Something like 90 percent of all footwear under $100 at retail is coming out of China, and we all need to diversify that strategy." And this, of course, is only the tip of the iceberg. 75 percent of new sellers in Amazon's top four markets - the US, the UK, Germany and Japan - are based in China, according to a 2021 report by e-commerce intelligence firm Marketplace Pulse.

And then of course, there's Walmart. According to estimates from organisations like the Alliance for American Manufacturing, 70 to 80 percent of Walmart's current non-food assortment is sourced from China. In a world increasingly prone to disruption, such dependencies on single-source supply are becoming increasingly risky. But frankly, supply chain disruptions are the least of our worries.

As Russia's attack on Ukraine has shown, such enormous trade imbalances create problems far greater than mere supply chain woes. They foster dangerous geopolitical insecurity. Case in point: as intelligence mounts that Russia is looking to China to aid its war effort, NATO allies, looking for any possible leverage, find themselves painted into a difficult corner. Could intense sanctions, tariffs and embargoes on Chinese goods by the West wipe out 30 years of China's economic growth in a heartbeat? Sure, they could. But consider the consequences for Western businesses. Imagine the empty shelves, decimated revenues and the resulting store closures and layoffs.

In essence, our addiction to cheap goods has put us in a position where any retaliatory economic action puts our own economies at as much risk as those of foreign adversaries. Never a good position to negotiate from. businessoffashion.com

'Retail Arms Race'
Experience Is Key: The Crazier The Better For Growing 'Retailtainment' Concepts
After years of being cooped up at home, consumers want to try something new. This realization, combined with a resurgence of the "retailtainment" trend, has prompted business owners to level up in unprecedented ways, as an arms race to provide the most epic customer experience unfolds across the U.S.

If there is one thing retailers took away from the pandemic, it is that consumers have options, said Katherine Cullen, senior director of industry and consumer insights for the National Retail Federation. It is no longer enough to be the most convenient, the fastest or to have the broadest selection. Experience matters, and business owners are racing to one-up each other in an attempt to prove their concept is the one worth trying.

"Consumers have more choice than ever before," Cullen said. "You have to be able to compete on all fronts, and experience is part of that."

"Retailtainment," or businesses focused on providing customers with experiences rather than goods, predates the pandemic. A 2019 study by NRF called the trend "2018's winning formula," and found that nearly half of consumers attended at least one retailtainment event that year. Among millennial shoppers, the share jumped to two-thirds.

Retailtainment was placed on hold during shutdowns but Cullen said it has since resurfaced as the country reopens and social gatherings resume. Americans want to spend more of their time away from home, she said, and retailers are responding accordingly. bisnow.com

'Reinventing the Shopping Experience'
Kroger and Nvidia partner to 'reinvent the shopping experience' with AI and digital twin simulations
Nvidia and Kroger today announced a "strategic collaboration" designed to bring more AI-powered applications and services to the grocery realm. Kroger and Nvidia revealed plans to build an AI lab and "demonstration center," to improve its shipping logistics and in-store shopping experience.

As the largest supermarket chain in the U.S. by revenue, Kroger needs little introduction. But as with many "traditional" brick-and-mortar retailers, Kroger has had to move with the times and embrace technology to connect with consumers where they prefer to transact - today, Kroger claims third spot in terms of online U.S. grocery sales, after Walmart and Amazon.

Kroger has been investing heavily in its modernization efforts, which has included partnering with robotics company Ocado, and teaming up with Microsoft to develop data-driven grocery stores. And its latest partnership fits neatly into those other recent initiatives. venturebeat.com

Inflation Finally Hitting Retail Sales
Study: Inflation cutting into in-store, e-commerce spending
A new study reveals the details of exactly how inflation is affecting consumer online purchase behavior.

Nearly all consumers (72%) are spending less due to recent inflation, significantly cutting out "fun" or "impulse buys," according to the new Q1 2022 Consumer Trends Report from selling platform JungleScout, a quarterly study of 1,000 U.S. consumers. Almost four in 10 (38%) respondents are spending less overall, and more than one-third (34%) are spending less online, the highest reported figures on decreased consumer spending in at least one year.

Close to half (47%) of respondents buy from their favorite brands due to affordability, which is ranked as the leading driver of brand loyalty over quality, familiarity, and sustainability. More than half (53%) of respondents make a purchase when presented with a deal, coupon or discount code; and 47% only purchase products that are on sale or discounted. chainstoreage.com

Walmart Is Closing These Stores Permanently Next Month

Hershey workers at Virginia plant vote against unionizing

Outdoor Retailer returns to Utah, but Patagonia, REI & North Face won't be there

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Organized Retail Crime: CEOs are Taking a Stand

With the recent surge in organized retail crime, it is now getting much-needed attention from the highest levels of the organization. On December 9th, 2021, the CEOs of 20 leading retailers expressed in an open letter to Congressional leadership, their concerns about the impact organized retail crime is having on employees and communities across the U.S. and urged Congress to pass the Integrity, Notification and Fairness in Online Retail Marketplaces (INFORM) for Consumers Act. As CEOs are leaning on congress to address the ease of resale issue with legislation, they are also looking internally for solutions to keep their employees and shoppers safe while protecting their merchandise.

"Retailers have made significant investments to combat organized retail crime, but as they note in their letter, criminals will continue these brazen acts of theft as long as they are able to anonymously sell their stolen goods using online marketplaces," said Dodge.

What exactly are the CEOs saying?

"ORC is on the rise at Best Buy. The tactic involves an organized "gang" of people who steal entire shelves of high-value products, such as electronics, to resell them for a profit. This is traumatizing for our associates and is unacceptable. We are doing everything we can to try to create a safe as possible environment."
-Corie Barry, CEO Best Buy

"They're criminals, and it is impacting our stores. What they're doing is they're taking our products off the shelf and they're putting them online and we need to go after that." -Karen Lynch, CEO CVS

About 25% of the decline in gross margin came from loss of inventory - what grocery stores and other retailers refer to as shrink. That's heavily driven by organized crime or at least it appears to be."
-Rodney McMullen, CEO The Kroger Co.

The right solution to prevent ORC

Gatekeeper's Purchek® solution is a highly effective cart-based pushout theft prevention system that thwarts ORC and opportunistic shoplifters at the moment a theft occurs. As a thief attempts to leave the store with a cartload of unpaid for merchandise, the pushout prevention system locks the cart in place, thereby keeping the merchandise in the store. When this occurs, most thieves walk away empty handed. As shoplifters experience this type of disruption, they commonly seek easier targets.

Gatekeeper Systems' Purchek® solution may be your key to finding common ground with your CEO on how to retain your merchandise while improving safety. Contact Gatekeeper to learn a little more.







The Great Resignation's Impact on Cybersecurity
Companies should evolve cybersecurity strategy in light of Great Resignation
While the obvious challenge of the Great Resignation is rising labor shortages, the phenomenon is now posing a critical risk to another important aspect of the workforce: cybersecurity. With record numbers of employees across the globe abruptly quitting their jobs, companies are now faced with the larger task of ensuring the door is firmly closed behind former employees, who may still have access to corporate digital assets after their last day.

Why is offboarding a security threat?

Today's offboarding processes can leave former employees with continued access to sensitive digital assets - a huge liability to their former employers. As most companies and leaders know, not every employee leaves on good terms, and the retrieval of company hardware assets, which may store sensitive information, can often be a challenge.

AdvertisementA recent report found that 83% of employees continued accessing accounts from their previous employer after leaving the company. Also, that a staggering 56% of employees had used their continued digital access to harm their former employer. Some personnel may intentionally retaliate against their former employer; some may leverage valuable IP to impress prospective rival employers; and some may even leak sensitive information accidentally.

The transition to remote work has only made it easier for attacks or just mistakes like these to occur. Whether malicious or not, each former employee may pose a considerable cybersecurity risk, and should be offboarded accordingly.

Remote work trends - a compounding risk factor

Beyond just offboarding concerns, employees across all industries are also demanding remote work flexibility from their employers. While adapting company culture to meet employee needs is a positive step, remote work may increase cybersecurity risks.

A hybrid workforce environment grants employees, using mobile and laptop devices, access to sensitive company data from unknown network environments with uncontrolled security posture. As companies modernize their IT service delivery strategies to keep up with these remote work trends, they must also stay 10 steps ahead in their security processes.

What should businesses do to mitigate risks associated with the evolving workforce?

It's not enough for enterprises just to leverage an internal risk management strategy based on the assumption that in-office work is the default and remote work is the exception. Organizations need to evolve their strategy to address the new workforce paradigm and prioritize process to deal with constant changes in the workforce population. helpnetsecurity.com

Investigation Finds FBI Ransomware Response is Lacking
Senate ransomware investigation says FBI leaving victims in the lurch
The FBI might be coming up short when helping ransomware victims restore their systems, according to an investigation released Thursday by the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee's ranking member, Rob Portman, R-Ohio.

Senate investigators plumbed three case studies of ransomware attacks against U.S. companies within the past five years. All three companies interviewed for the investigation reported the attacks to the FBI at the time, but only two pursued assistance. All three attacks were committed by REvil, the notorious Russian ransomware gang that drew intense scrutiny from U.S. law enforcement last year after major attacks on software supplier Kaseya and global meat supplier JBS.

The Senate committee report withholds the names of the victims and dates of the attacks to protect victims from potential retaliation from hackers, a committee aide said in a call with reporters. The report notes that both companies that sought out assistance from the FBI found the response lacking.

"They told the Committee that the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) prioritized its investigative efforts into REvil's operations over protecting the companies' data and mitigating damage," the report notes. "Both companies also indicated they did not receive advice on best practices for responding to a ransomware attack or other useful guidance from the Federal Government."

In the case of "Entity A," a Fortune 500 company, the FBI reportedly offered a hostage negotiator with no experience in ransomware. Neither of the companies in the report interacted with CISA during their response to the attacks, according to investigators.

There have also been publicly reported cases of the FBI leaving victims in the lurch. The FBI reportedly withheld a decryption key that could have helped hundreds of Kaseya customers in order to not tip off REvil to an operation against the group, The Washington Post reported in September. cyberscoop.com

Cost of Ransomware Attacks Surges
Bigger demands, bigger payouts are the trend in ransomware, report says
Large and highly organized cybercrime groups like Conti are helping to drive up the overall cost of ransomware attacks, according to the latest annual analysis of the cybercrime method by Palo Alto Networks' Unit 42.

"The average ransom demand in cases worked by Unit 42 incident responders rose 144% in 2021 to $2.2 million, while the average payment climbed 78% to $541,010," according to the company, which released its latest Ransomware Threat Report on Thursday.

Ransomware attackers were also more likely than ever to post information from data breaches on dark web "leak sites" as a tactic to prod victims to pay up, the report says. "The number of victims whose data was posted on leak sites rose 85% in 2021, to 2,566 organizations," the company says.

About 1 in 5 ransomware cases worked by Unit 42 involved Conti, the Eastern European gang that has earned international media coverage in recent weeks after a leak of thousands of its own documents. In examining the leak, cybersecurity researchers have noted Conti's professionalism and structure.

Also prominent were attacks by REvil, also known as Sodinokibi, a group raided by Russian law enforcement before that country's invasion of Ukraine. About 7 percent of ransomware incidents handled by Unit 42 were traced to that group. U.S. senators released a report Thursday that critiqued the FBI's response to several REvil-linked cases.

Another sign of ransomware's popularity: The company says it spotted 35 new ransomware gangs in 2021 alone. cyberscoop.com

Dual North Korean hacking efforts found attacking Google Chrome vulnerability
Two distinct sets of North Korean hackers were exploiting the same remote code execution vulnerability in the Chrome web browser - one targeting news media and IT companies, the other aimed at cryptocurrency and fintech organizations - Google's Threat Analysis Group announced Thursday.

The vulnerabilty, which was patched on Feb. 14, would have allowed the hackers to deliver malware packages in hidden iframes, both on websites they owned as well as websites they'd compromised. The two groups had different aims and used different techniques, but they used the same exploit kit, meaning they likely worked for the same entity with a shared supply chain, according to Adam Weidemann of the Threat Analysis Group, which published the findings to the group's blog. cyberscoop.com

The long, bumpy road to cyber incident reporting legislation - and the one still ahead

New cyberespionage campaign targeting ISPs, research entities







Behind Amazon's Union-Busting Strategy
Mandatory Meetings Reveal Amazon's Approach to Resisting Unions

The company has held hundreds of meetings with workers to discourage them from supporting a union in two upcoming elections.

On Staten Island, Amazon supervisors often refer to them as "training." At an Amazon warehouse in Alabama, supervisors refer to them ambiguously as "meetings." Amazon says they're officially "small group meetings."

Whatever Amazon calls them, the anti-union sessions that the company has held for employees this year have been part of an effort to fend off unions in two contentious elections.

Staten Island employees will vote Friday to Wednesday at their warehouse on whether to join the Amazon Labor Union, an independent union led by current and former workers. The National Labor Relations Board will announce the results in the days that follow.

Employees at the warehouse in Bessemer, Ala., are voting on whether to be represented by the Retail, Wholesale and Department Store Union. Ballots in the mail-in election, which the labor board sent out in early February, are due Friday and will be counted shortly after.

Amazon has used the regular meetings, which typically include a few dozen employees and last roughly 30 minutes, to create a false impression of what unionizing would entail, the union supporters said.

Amazon says that deciding whether or not to unionize is up to employees and that the mandatory meetings are intended to educate workers about what a union could mean for them. The company cites its competitive pay - just under $16 per hour for a full-time entry-level worker in Alabama and over $18 per hour on Staten Island - and benefits, which include health care benefits for full-time employees as soon as they join the company.

Companies are allowed to hold anti-union sessions, often known as "captive audience" meetings, until a prohibition takes effect shortly before mail-in ballots go out to workers or in-person voting begins. Amazon has typically held more than 20 meetings per day before those deadlines at the two warehouses. nytimes.com

E-Commerce: 40% of Global Retail Sales by 2026
Online sales to grow $2.4 trillion from 2021-2026
A new study predicts that global e-commerce sales growth is set to significantly outpace that of store-based commerce.

According to the latest edition of the annual Future of the Digital Shelf Report from Edge by Ascential, online worldwide sales will reach $2.4 trillion in gross merchandise value (GMV, or total value of goods sold) in 2026. This means e-commerce will account for almost 40% of global retail sales by 2026, with store-based retail dropping to 60% from 69% of total sales.

In addition, from 2021 to 2026, Edge by Ascential expects e-commerce will make up 63% of all total GMV growth, outpacing every other store-based retail channel. During the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, e-commerce activity increased by 37% worldwide, which Edge by Ascential analysts say caused advancement and evolution throughout the entire online shopping ecosystem.

The study indicates the majority of shoppers now begin their product searches on digital channels, with one in three store purchases beginning online. And when in-store, shoppers are increasingly engaging with digital experiences through mobile apps, QR codes, and social media and payment. chainstoreage.com

Amazon Is the Biggest Clothing Retailer in the U.S. It's Way Ahead of No. 2.







Dallas, TX: 3 accused of stealing over $10K in merch from Allen ULTA store, leading police on chase
Police arrested three people after stealing more than $10,000 in merchandise from an Allen ULTA Beauty store and leading police on a chase through east Dallas on Saturday. The Allen Police Department said officers responded to a call about a theft in progress at the ULTA store located at 190 E. Stacy Rd. Suite 2680, where three suspects took multiple baskets of boxed perfume. Police said the suspect's vehicle was spotted traveling southbound on U.S. Highway 75 near Bethany.  During the police pursuit, Allen police dispatch said it received a call from a woman who identified herself as the mother of an occupant of the suspect vehicle. Police were able to convince the driver - through communication of the woman - to pull over at the Circle K gas station at Interstate 20 and Trade Days Boulevard in Canton, Texas. The police pursuit lasted more than 85 miles, police said. All occupants of the vehicle subsequently surrendered to police and were taken into custody.  wfaa.com

Vancouver, Canada: Two men allegedly stole over $16,000 in merchandise from Lululemon
Two men who allegedly stole more than $16,000 in merchandise from a Kitsilano clothing store have been arrested by Vancouver Police. On Wednesday (March 23) around 4:20 a.m., a 35-year-old woman who lives close to the store called 911 after she woke up to the sounds of glass being smashed and a security alarm going off near Arbutus Street and West 4th Avenue, explains a news release. When police arrived at the scene, the suspects were already gone but an "alert VPD officer acting on a hunch tracked them down after spotting a taxi leaving the area with no lights on," state the VPD. The officers pulled the taxi over to investigate and discovered the two suspects inside, along with more than $16,000 in stolen goods. dailyhive.com

Matthews, NC: NC police ID 2 women accused of spending $37,000+ using stolen credit cards; 2 men also sought
Two women who are accused of spending more than $35,000 using stolen credit cards have been identified and North Carolina police say two young men are also part of their theft ring. The women made "fraudulent purchases" at a Lowe's home improvement store at 2115 Matthews Township Parkway on Feb. 3, according to police in Matthews, which is south of Charlotte. Matthews police issued an alert with two photos of the women on March 8. The women are also suspected of using stolen credit cards while making other purchases in the area that exceeded $37,000, police said. Earlier this month, Matthews police announced they figured out the identity of the two women thanks to "numerous tips we received." Police also said their investigation led to two other suspects. Police said the four suspects face 22 arrest warrants. cbs17.com

Radnor, PA: Police asking for help in identifying suspects in theft from the Micro Center store
Radnor police are asking for the public's help in identifying the three people captured on surveillance photos, suspected of theft from a computer store in Wayne. On Tuesday, March 22, around 1:45 p.m., the three subjects entered the Micro Center at 550 E. Lancaster Ave. in Wayne. They removed several items from the store and concealed them into a duffel bag. The value of the missing items was unknown at the time the report was made to police. mainlinemedianews.com

Bellingham, WA: Theft suspects reportedly drive off with 2 people hanging onto getaway vehicle
Two Bellingham men are suspected of stealing more than $3,000 worth of merchandise from Whatcom Electric and Battery and then driving off with two people, who were trying to stop the theft, still hanging onto the getaway vehicle.  bellinghamherald.com

Horsehead, NY: Three Elmira women arrested for stealing over $1000 in merchandise from Horseheads Walmart

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Shootings & Deaths

Philadelphia, PA: Would-be robber shot dead inside Dollar General
Philadelphia police say a dollar store manager shot and killed an attempted robbery suspect on Thursday night. It happened around 8:30 p.m. at the Dollar General located at 9th Street and Girard Avenue. According to Philadelphia Police Inspector DF Pace, the 36-year-old male suspect walked into the store, announced a robbery and ordered the cashier to open the register. That's when the worker got the manager's attention, which ultimately led to the shooting. "The manager came over, attempted to talk to him. The suspect then said again, 'I have a gun, give me all your money,'" according to Pace. The suspect then brandished a makeshift weapon -- it was in the shape of a gun and covered in plastic, police said. The store manager, who has a license to carry, shot the suspect at least one time in the head, police said. He died at the scene. 6abc.com

Philadelphia, PA: Would-be robber killed after smoke shop customer fights back
Exclusive video obtained by Action News shows the moment a customer fought back against a would-be robbery suspect inside a Philadelphia smoke shop. It happened around 1 a.m. Tuesday on the 5300 block of 5th Street in the city's Olney section. Police say the male suspect, believed to be in his 20s, approached a 45-year-old man who was standing by an ATM inside the store. Within seconds, the customer is able to get a gun away from the suspect before shooting him several times. The suspect fled the store and was later found dead inside a stolen car on the 400 block of West Olney Avenue, according to investigators. 6abc.com

San Carlos, CA: 'America's Most Wanted' suspect in 1993 killing of San Carlos shop owner arrested
A 61-year-old woman was arrested in Oklahoma in the 1993 killing of a San Carlos shop owner who was shot during a "robbery gone wrong," authorities in Northern California said Thursday. Rayna Elizabeth Hoffman-Ramos was arrested in Dewey last week in a case that was cold for nearly 30 years. She is in Washington County Jail awaiting extradition to California to face charges in the April 26, 1993, fatal shooting of Shu Ming Tang, said San Mateo County Sheriff's Office Lt. Jacob Trickett at a Thursday news conference.

Tang was shot once in the chest while tending his mom-and-pop shop, the Devonshire Little Store, in the hills of San Carlos. He died later at a hospital, Trickett said. The killing shocked the quiet bedroom community 25 miles (40 kilometers) south of San Francisco and attracted national attention after it was featured on "America's Most Wanted" that same year. Detectives received information that a woman was seen leaving the store shortly after the shooting. They followed various leads but the case went unsolved for decades, Trickett said. In 2018, San Mateo County Sheriff's Detectives assigned to cold case investigations reviewed the case, Thanks to "the advancement in forensic technology" they identified Hoffman-Ramos, who lived in San Mateo County at the time of Tang's killing, as a suspect, he said. Trickett declined to specify how detectives connected Hoffman-Ramos to the homicide. He said she was the sole suspect in the case. abc10.com

Tacoma, WA: 2 teen fugitive suspects in pawn shop robbery now prime suspects in Tacoma pot shop murder
The Tacoma Police Department said Thursday that is searching for two teen fugitives who cut off their electronic monitoring devices from a previous armed robbery and are now suspects in the murder of a pot shop employee last weekend. A police spokesperson said Montrell D. Hatfield, 16, and Marshon Jones, 15, are considered armed and dangerous and are the prime suspects in the fatal shooting last Saturday night at the World of Weed, located in the 3200 block of Portland Ave. E. KOMO News does not generally identify juveniles accused of crimes but since they are considered dangerous murder suspects who are on the run, the station is identifying the pair with the consent of Tacoma police. Police said the armed suspects entered the Tacoma marijuana shop after 10 p.m. last weekend. It was not immediately clear what led up to the fatal shooting but an employee, identified by the Pierce County Medical Examiner's Office as Jordan Brown, 29, of Gig Harbor, was slain during the hold up. Hatfield and Jones have also been charged in a violent and brazen daylight pawn shop robbery in Federal Way in which customers and workers were pistol whipped and assaulted during the incident. komonews.com


Robberies, Incidents & Thefts

Fresno, CA: Armed robber tells 7 Eleven clerk 'you do now' after refusing to sell him a gift card after hours
Officers said the man walked into the 7-Eleven on Chestnut and Belmont Avenues around 2:00 a.m. and asked for a gift card. The cashier told him it was store policy not to sell them past 5:00 p.m., and officers said the man pulled out a gun and told the clerk "you do now," and demanded the gift card. Police said the clerk complied with the man's demand, and on his way out, he also stole a drink and some sunglasses before riding away on a bicycle. The clerk was not hurt. bakersfieldnow.com

Minnetonka, MN: Fast food, fast crimes: Suspects charged in multiple Wendy's, Taco Bell burglaries
Two suspects have been charged in a series of smash-and-grab break-ins at fast food restaurants throughout the western suburbs after multiple police departments coordinated to connect the crimes to a traffic stop. Jamaill Gibbs, 30, and Trevion Green, 27, both of Houston, Texas, have been charged with two counts of third-degree stealing/commit felony and two counts of second-degree building tool possession each for their involvement in what police believe were back-to-back burglaries at multiple Taco Bell and Wendy's locations. According to Minnetonka police, on Tuesday officers were dispatched to a Wendy's for a reported burglary through the drive-thru window.

When officers arrived they found the drive-thru window had been shattered, and the office rummaged through. The safe had been cut into with some sort of tool and money stolen. At the time there were no suspects. A short time later officers were dispatched to a Taco Bell a half-mile away for the same report - a shattered drive-thru window, an office rummaged through and money taken. But after burglarizing the Minnetonka and Plymouth businesses, and barely escaping arrest, the suspects continued again - this time burglarizing the Taco Bell in Buffalo. "This seemed to be a pattern for these suspects," Tait said, noting break-ins at the same chains in Fargo and West Fargo are being investigated into being connected to them as well. "This is a great example of how resources pooling together can do great things. This is one of those times where we got lucky, and we were able to clear a large amount of burglaries in a short amount of time." fox9.com

DOJ: Serial Armed Robber Sentenced to Over 25 Years in Federal Prison for Violent Robberies of Local Businesses

Memphis, TN: Man accused of robbing 5 stores at gun point

Boston, MA: Man Pleads Guilty in Federal Court to Armed Robbery of T-Mobile in Brockton

Topeka, KS: Dairy Queen employee accused of using customer's card on OnlyFans



Auto - Memphis, TN - Armed Robbery
Auto - Sun Prairie, WI - Burglary
C-Store - Chicago, IL - Burglary
C-Store - Scranton, PA - Armed Robbery
C-Store - Winston County, MS - Armed Robbery
C-Store - San Francisco, CA - Armed Robbery
CVS - Memphis, TN - Armed Robbery
CVS - Saratoga Springs, NY - Robbery
Dollar General - Philadelphia, PA - Armed Robbery / susp killed
Dollar General - Hampton, VA - Armed Robbery
Dollar General - Memphis, TN - Armed Robbery
Dollar General - Lowndes County, MS - Armed Robbery
Electronics - Radnor, PA - Robbery
Gas Station - Knoxville, TN - Armed Robbery
Guns - Urbana, IL - Burglary
Guns - Columbia, SC - Armed Robbery
Jewelry - Norfolk, VA - Robbery
Jewelry - National City - CA - Robbery
Pawn - Memphis, TN - Armed Robbery
Pawn - Tacoma, WA - Armed Robbery
Restaurant - Madison, WI - Armed Robbery
Restaurant - Minnetonka, MN - Burglary (Wendy's)
Restaurant - New Bedford, MA - Burglary
Restaurant - Minnetonka, MN - Burglary (Taco Bell)
Sport - Fayetteville, NC - Burglary
Thrift - Chesterfield, VA - Armed Robbery
Tobacco - Philadelphia, PA - Armed Robbery / susp killed
Ulta- Dallas, TX - Robbery
Verizon - East Earl Township, PA - Burglary
7-Eleven - Fresno, CA - Armed Robbery
7-Eleven - Woodland Park, NJ - Armed Robbery
7-Eleven - Haines City, FL - Armed Robbery


Daily Totals:
• 24 robberies
• 8 burglaries
• 2 shootings
• 2 killed


Weekly Totals:
• 91 robberies
• 32 burglaries
• 6 shootings
• 4 killed

Click to enlarge map





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Divisional Loss Prevention Manager
Oakville, ON, CAN - posted March 16
This position is responsible for directing loss prevention and security field operational personnel and programs that protect the human and material resources of the Corporation's assets throughout Canada, The Americas Group. This position manages and resolves loss prevention and security related issues...

Loss Prevention Supervisor
Asheville, NC - posted March 10
This position will act as the expert Loss prevention subject matter expert for this building. Loss Prevention Site Lead is to safeguard associates, equipment, and the assets of the organization as well as independently assess the environment, recommend and/or execute appropriate actions in a timely manner to mitigate risks...

Assoc. Manager. Asset Protection
Plano, TX - posted March 10
This role's primary focus will be to serve as the lead for Executive Protection, Major Events Security, and assist with Travel Security programs worldwide. In addition, this position will play a primary role in executing safety, security, and loss prevention programs and policies for all corporate-owned locations...

Area Loss Prevention Manager
Virginia & Maryland - posted March 9
Our Area Loss Prevention Managers ensure safe and secure stores through the objective identification of loss and risk opportunities. Our Area Loss Prevention Managers plan and prioritize to provide an optimal customer experience to their portfolio of stores. They thrive on supporting and building high performance teams that execute with excellence...

Loss Prevention Security Investigator
San Bernardino, CA - posted March 8
Protecting of Company property against theft. Detection, apprehension, detention and/or arrest of shoplifters. Internal investigations and investigations of crimes against the Company. Detect and apprehend shoplifters. Conduct internal theft, ORC and Corporate investigations. Prepare thorough and concise investigative reports...

Regional Fraud Investigator
Dallas, TX - posted March 8
Regional Fraud Investigation Managers are responsible for in total, the receipt of reports of losses of assets, consisting of money and or merchandise causing losses to Signet Jewelers Inc. The position further entails the investigation, determinations of loss causes, individuals responsible for such losses if warranted...

Regional Loss Prevention Manager
Sugar Land, TX - posted March 7
The position will be responsible for: -Internal theft investigations -External theft investigations -Major cash shortage investigations -Fraudulent transaction investigations -Missing inventory investigations -Reviewing stores for physical security improvements -Liaison with local Police Depts. and make court appearances...

Corporate Risk Manager
New Orleans, LA, Memphis, TN, or Jackson, MS - March 9
Summary of Role and Responsibilities: A proactive approach to preventing losses/injuries, whether to our employees, third parties, or customer's valuables. They include but are not limited to cash in transit, auto losses, or injuries...

Loss Prevention Supervisor
West Jefferson, OH - posted March 7
Provides leadership to the LP staff which includes but not limited to performance development, direction on daily duties, and meeting department goals. Supervises Loss Prevention programs and process in the Distribution Center (DC) and partners with DC Management team to ensure physical security, product, equipment and employees meet LP requirements...

Retail Asset Protection Associate
Medford, MA; Brockton, MA; Waterbury, CT;
East Springfield, MA
- posted March 7
The Asset Protection Greeter role is responsible for greeting all customers as they enter the store, ensuring that customers see the Company's commitment to provide a safe and secure shopping environment, as well as deterring theft, shoplifting, or other dishonest activities...

Loss Prevention Specialists (Store Detective)
Boston, MA - posted March 7
Detect and respond to external theft and fraud by working undercover within the store(s) you are assigned to. Working as a team with store management and associates in combating loss in the store(s). Developing and analyzing external theft trends, utilizing information in company reports and information gathered from store management and associates... 

Asset Protection Lead
Brooklyn, NY - posted February 25
You are charged with identification and mitigation of external theft and fraud trends within a specific market and group of stores. This role will conduct investigations focusing on Habitual Offenders, high impact external theft/fraud incidents through the use of company technology (CCTV, Incident Reporting, Data Analysis)...

Regional Asset Protection & Safety Manager
Chicago, IL - posted February 23
Responsible for ensuring application of EHS, occupational safety, and loss prevention programs and policies at the store, region, and cross-regional levels. Works to ensure education, communication, and understanding of safety and loss prevention policies, including how safety and asset protection contributes to profitability and business success...

Regional Asset Protection Manager
Indiana - posted February 22
This role is to lead the Asset Protection business partner model for the two regions of retail stores and serves as a strategic partner to regional operations leadership. The role is responsible for leading a team of market and store asset protection personnel responsible for ensuring the safety of people, the security of assets, compliance with internal and regulatory standards and the prevention of shrink...

Loss Prevention & Safety Business Partner
Sparks, NV - posted February 18
The Loss Prevention and Safety Business Partner (LPSBP) is responsible for effectively delivering on operational objectives and KPI performance across Assets Protection, Associate Safety, Physical Security, and Investigations, in an assigned DC of responsibility, in partnership with the facility leadership and home office team...


Loss Prevention Manager
Moonachie, NJ - posted February 16
The Loss Prevention Manager is responsible for supporting the day-to-day operations of our retail locations. This role is responsible for the implementation and coordination of all Loss Prevention best practices. This includes training for store teams to ensure understanding and compliance of physical security, inventory and loss control...

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