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Only 18% of Retailers Optimize Return Rates for Major Product Categories

According to new survey findings from Appriss Retail and Incisiv, the ongoing growth of ecommerce is transforming how retailers must manage returns

IRVINE, Calif. - Oct. 26, 2022
- Appriss Retail, an industry leader in data science that transforms the consumer purchase cycle, today announced the results of a new survey in partnership with Incisiv. The "2022 State of the Industry: Returns as an Engagement Strategy" report found that retailers who treat returns with a "one-size-fits-all" approach will miss out on important engagement opportunities.

The survey asked over 130 retailers about their outlooks regarding returns as a customer engagement opportunity, as well as their challenges, capabilities and future plans for strategically improving overall returns performance.

Read more in the Vendor Spotlight column below

NRF's 'Fight Retail Crime Day' is Today!

Join the NRF in Pushing for Congressional Action on ORC & Theft

TODAY is Fight Retail Crime Day in Washington, D.C.! Join with the National Retail Federation (NRF) in pushing for congressional action this fall on the retail industry's top two priorities to address organized retail crime and theft.

Taking action only takes one minute - add your voice along with thousands of retail professionals, and tell Congress to act on our top two priorities. Click here to take action.

NRF's priorities include:

INFORM Consumers Act (S.936/H.R. 5502): Requires online marketplaces to verify the identity of high-volume third-party sellers to help curb the sale of stolen and counterfeit merchandise. NRF supports inclusion of the INFORM Act in the pending Senate National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) manager's amendment.

Combatting Organized Retail Crime Act (S.5046/H.R. 9177): Establishes a new Organized Retail Crime Coordination Center that will help federal, state and local law enforcements agencies better coordinate to effectively combat criminal activities. Recently introduced in both chambers of Congress, NRF is advocating for additional cosponsors.

We invite you to share this information widely with your colleagues and networks. Every voice counts.

Get Your LP/AP Executives to Support This Effort

Reach Out to Your Member of Congress Directly

Find Your Representative Here


Join RLPSA and FIRMA powered by RLPSA for a night of networking and FUN October 27 at Ballast Point, Long Beach. Make sure you're dressed in your Halloween best as we're giving prizes for best costume!

Click here to register

The U.S. Crime Surge
The Retail Impact

Store Clerk's Location is Key to Averting Violent C-Store Robberies
The Psychology Behind Convenience Store Robberies That Turn Violent

A new study looks into the behavioral scripts and social norms of convenience store robberies - and offers a solution that could help save lives.

Despite the proliferation of modern security measures, from bulletproof glass and CCTV to security guards and window railings, convenience stores still remain easy targets for thieves. In the U.S., 6 percent of all robberies known to the police take place in these mom-and-pop stores, according to a report by the U.S. Department of Justice. And though most of the time cash is handed over without anyone getting hurt, sometimes things go horribly wrong.

Convenience stores have some of the highest rates of workplace homicides in the U.S. - second only to taxicab drivers. Beyond that, researchers have shown that is often the smallest stores in the poorest neighborhood that are the most vulnerable. Unable to afford better security measures, they are repeatedly targeted by thieves.

But University of Toronto researcher Katherine DeCelles and her colleagues have been investigating why some convenience store robberies go wrong. Beyond that, in a new study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, the researchers suggest some cost-free changes that could save lives in the process.

Chain of Events

After analyzing CCTV footage from 196 robberies, the researchers found a pattern: Robberies were more likely to get violent when the store clerk was not behind the counter when thieves entered the store.

Having a closer eye on petty shoplifters likely deters them from stealing something like a chocolate bar, DeCelles says. But in the case of armed robberies, it can set off a chain of events that means someone is more likely to get hurt.

The Psychology of Robberies

The biggest determinant of violence in a convenience store robbery is most likely the behavior of store clerks, the report by the U.S. Department of Justice found. The unexpected scenario also means potentially uneasy thieves must take control of the situation to move the clerk to the cashier. Such a tense standoff may require touching, verbal interaction or a number of other methods which increases the chance of misunderstanding, panic and ultimately violence. discovermagazine.com

Retailers Need To Prepare For 'Thieving Season'
Security Window Film May Deter Smash and Grab Crime
For retailers the winter season is traditionally one of their strongest sales periods of the year, but it is also 'thieving season'. Retailers need to prepare for crimes of opportunity such as lightening quick smash and grab crimes, states the nonprofit International Window Film Association (IWFA), which is recommending the installation of security window films to help deter thieves.

Smash and grab is a bold crime that involves smashing a glass barrier, such as a store window, a door, or showcase, grabbing valuables, and then making a quick getaway, without concern for setting off alarms or creating noise. In 2019, retail theft reportedly added up to $69 billion.

Nearly 67 percent of leading retailers surveyed report a moderate to considerable increase in organized retail crime, and 80 percent believe it will only get worse in the future. Academic research has suggested that most retail theft represent crimes of opportunity. In other words, people steal when it is easy to do so.

Security window films can be the thickness of two drivers licenses stacked together, or much thinner. In addition to the strong adhesive used to secure the film to glass, a wet glaze system designed to adhere the film's edges to the window frame itself, or to a display case, may also be added for more strength and security.

"Unprotected glass can be broken by a thief in a few seconds, but with security window film it may take several minutes or more, even after multiple impacts," said Smith. "This time delay may frustrate a would-be thief and encourage them to move on, and it may also buy a retailer time so other actions may be taken or the police may arrive in response to some alarm," he added. yahoo.com

NYC Crime is Down 44.4% Since 2020
Crunching the numbers: Yes, crime is up - but NYC is still safer than it was two decades ago. The NYPD's statistics prove it.

NYC isn't exactly falling into chaos - and the NYPD's own statistics tell that story.

While overall crime has increased year-over-year in New York City last year and so far this year, the NYPD's historical CompStat figures show that the Five Boroughs are still far safer now than they were back in 2000.

Last year, the NYPD reported a total of 102,741 major felonies (murder, rape, robbery, felony assault, burglary, grand larceny and auto theft). That's up from the 95,593 felonies reported during the pandemic year of 2020, and the highest total since 2016, when the NYPD tallied 101,716 felonies.

But turn the clock back to 2000, and the NYPD catalogued that year 184,852 major felonies. Despite terrorist attacks, recessions, a pandemic and other societal issues in the previous 21 years, crime in New York City was down 44.4% in 2021 from the 2000 totals.

In fact, 2000 was the high-water mark for every single major crime category but one over the past 21 years.

Back in 2000, the city saw 673 homicides. That's 27.5% higher than the 488 murders the NYPD tallied in 2021, which marked only the third time since 2012 that the city recorded more than 400 homicides in a single year.

Robberies were up significantly in 2021, with 13,831 such crimes reported, a 5.5% increase from 2020. But the robbery total of 2021 represents a 57.5% decrease from the 32,562 robberies that the NYPD tallied in 2000.

Another property crime, burglaries, are still way below the numbers tallied in 2000. That year, the NYPD tallied 38,352 break-ins; in 2021, that number was just 12,811, or about 33.4% of the 2000 burglary total.

Grand larcenies (40,870 in 2021 compared to 49,631 in 2000) are also down over the past two decades. amny.com

San Francisco's Latest Crime Closure
Why Did Cotopaxi Leave San Francisco?

The company's CEO explains his decision to close its store in the "city of chaos."

Hayes Valley is an aspirational neighborhood located in central San Francisco, the main strip of which is lined with trendy stores and restaurants. It's also a neighborhood where, according to Davis Smith, the CEO of the outdoor-gear brand Cotopaxi, retailers have begun to lock their doors during the day for fear of being robbed in broad daylight.

Last week, Smith announced that he would be temporarily closing his company's flagship outpost on Hayes Street, which he says has been robbed dozens of times since its opening just a year ago. In a LinkedIn post talking about the decision, Smith called San Francisco "a city of chaos."

Caroline Mimbs Nyce: For starters, tell me how this decision came about.

Davis Smith: We opened the store, and within a few days the front window was smashed in, and they looted the store. That was really disappointing. We replaced the window, and it was immediately smashed in again and the store was looted again.

Nyce: Had you even trained the staff at that point?

Smith: It happened four times. We boarded up the windows, and people graffitied the boards. We ended up putting some vinyl signage of our brand over the boards, so it looked better. We eventually were able to get some metal gates that were installed so that we could protect the store when we were closed. Unfortunately, what we saw was that then basically organized theft rings would just walk into the store and grab thousands and thousands of dollars worth of product and walk out of the store. Our staff is trained to not confront people. It's not worth risking someone's safety over a backpack or a jacket.

Nyce: Do you think you were being systematically targeted? Have you heard of this happening to other Hayes Valley stores?

Smith: It's not just us. A bunch of our neighboring retailers have experienced the exact same thing. Obviously, some retailers might be more immune to it. But a company like ours, we have a $250 down jacket and you can go grab 20 of them really easily. theatlantic.com

Sign of the Times in Philadelphia as Crime Surges
Update: Crews Remove 'Wawa' From Shuttered Center City Store

The Wawas along Center City in Philadelphia closed this week due to 'continued safety and security challenges,' Wawa said

A sign of Wawa drawing back on its Philadelphia presence took place Tuesday morning as crews took down the signage in front of the recently shuttered store along Market Street at 19th Street.

NBC10 cameras captured crews ripping off the light-up W's and A's from the façade of the Center City location before daybreak.

The 19th and Market Wawa location, along with the 12th and Market location, of the popular convenience store both closed Sunday, Wawa said.

Earlier this month, Wawa cited safety concerns and security challenges as its reasoning for closing the two locations in the heart of the city.

"Despite reducing hours and investing in additional operational measures, continued safety and security
challenges and business factors have made it increasingly difficult to remain open
in these two
locations," Wawa said. nbcphiladelphia.com

New York City Will Increase Police Presence in Subways to Combat Crime
With less than three weeks until Election Day, Gov. Kathy Hochul is trying to address a troubling series of violent incidents on the subway.

Crime takes center stage in New York governor's race

Will Violent Crime Drive a Red Wave in the Midterm Elections?



COVID Update

632.9M Vaccinations Given

US: 99.1M Cases - 1M Dead - 96.6M Recovered
Worldwide: 633.9M Cases - 6.5M Dead - 612.9M Recovered

Private Industry Security Guard Deaths: 362   Law Enforcement Officer Deaths: 812

New COVID Initiative from Walgreens
Walgreens partners with DoorDash to deliver COVID-19 medication free

Walgreens and DoorDash are jointly responding to a call for COVID-19 action from President Biden.

The drugstore giant and online delivery platform are launching a new initiative to facilitate free home delivery of prescriptions of Paxlovid, an oral COVID-19 medication administered to reduce the risk of hospitalization and death infection. This effort follows a public call from President Joe Biden for consumers and retailers to take action to halt the spread of COVID-19.

Through this new program, consumers with a prescription for Paxlovid being filled at Walgreens will be able to have their medication delivered directly to their homes through DoorDash at no additional cost. Eligible consumers will be able to access free same-day delivery of Paxlovid via Walgreens.com and the Walgreens app, with contactless delivery powered by the DoorDash Drive white-label fulfillment platform.

Walgreens first added DoorDash as an on-demand delivery partner in summer 2020, when online delivery volumes as a whole were rising to meet the needs of consumers homebound by the COVID-19 pandemic.

This collaboration is the latest service Walgreens has provided to help combat the pandemic. The retailer partners with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and life sciences firm Labcorp to make Pixel by Labcorp COVID-19 at-home collection kits available nationwide, at no cost to consumers who meet clinical guidelines for requiring a COVID-19 test. chainstoreage.com

Biden Meets With Pharmacy Execs in New COVID Booster Push
After getting COVID booster, Biden to announce new initiatives alongside pharmacy execs
President Joe Biden will get his updated COVID-19 vaccine on Tuesday while calling on more Americans to do so ahead of the winter and holiday season, according to the White House.

When delivering remarks, Biden will be joined by leaders of major U.S. pharmacy chains Walgreens, CVS, Rite Aid and Albertsons, as well as Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra, the president's chief medical adviser Dr. Anthony Fauci, Surgeon General Dr. Vivek Murthy and the White House COVID-19 response coordinator Dr. Ashish Jha "to discuss ongoing efforts to mobilize pharmacies to reach more Americans and encourage them to receive their updated COVID-19 vaccine," according to a White House official.

In the coming weeks, Walgreens will team up with DoorDash and Uber "to provide free delivery of prescriptions of Paxlovid, an oral COVID-19 treatment, directly to the doorsteps of Americans living in underserved communities," the White House said.

The Biden administration will release a "fall playbook for businesses to manage COVID-19," the White House said. Meanwhile, Albertsons, CVS, Rite Aid, Southeastern Grocers, Walgreens, Walmart and Sam's Club have their own initiatives to help Americans get vaccinated. abcnews.go.com

COVID Has Shown Importance of Diversity in the Workplace
The Importance Of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion an a Post-Covid Work World
Ask almost any company leader, and they will tell you they place a high priority on diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI). There's probably a finely sculpted DEI statement on the corporate website spelling out the company's position, and maybe there's even a DEI course for employees.

But the reality, both in the office and on the factory floor, often does not live up to the promise-a situation that has been brought into sharper focus by the Covid-19 pandemic. Considerable differences exist in the work experiences of employees of different genders, races and sexual orientations. forbes.com

NYC Rescinds COVID Mandate for Private Employers, High-Risk Extracurriculars

Regular exercise may improve the effectiveness of coronavirus vaccines

Omicron keeps finding new evolutionary tricks to outsmart our immunity


Consumers & Companies Battle Over Biometric Data Use
Retailers, tech companies, banks allegedly collect voiceprints, other biometric data

Consumers recently filed lawsuits against companies accused of violating the law by collecting, storing and using their customers' biometric data without their consent.

The biometric data privacy class action lawsuits involve claims under the Illinois Biometric Information Privacy Act (BIPA), which regulates what a company must do before collecting biometric data. BIPA stipulates that a company must first obtain express written consent before collecting any biometric data and provide retention policies and plans to destroy the biometric data eventually.

Papa John's accused of unlawfully collecting voiceprints of food orderers

Papa John's faced a class action lawsuit accusing it of violating BIPA by allegedly unlawfully collecting voiceprints and other biometric data from customers placing food orders on its PapaCall automated ordering system.

Walmart faces claims it used store cameras to unlawfully collect customer biometric data

Walmart was hit with a class action lawsuit in September by a consumer alleging the big box retailer unlawfully collects, stores and uses the biometric data of its customers without their consent. The consumer behind the complaint argues Walmart unlawfully collects the biometric data of its customers by using cameras and advanced video surveillance systems outfitted in its retail stores.

Christian Dior unlawfully captures facial geometric information with Virtual-Try On feature, class action says

The consumer behind the class action lawsuit argues Christian Dior uses its Virtual Try-On feature to unlawfully capture the facial geometric information of consumers who virtually try on eyewear on its website. topclassactions.com
   RELATED: Polish retail chain trials biometric payments

Retailers Boosted by Halloween Sales
How Halloween became a $10B business for retailers
Halloween decorations have increasingly grown in popularity over the years and it's become a lucrative opportunity for retailers.

Nearly 70% of consumers plan on celebrating Halloween this year, sending projected spend on the category to $10.6 billion, up from $10.1 billion in 2021, according to a survey conducted by Prosper Insights & Analytics and the National Retail Federation. One of the most popular ways consumers plan to celebrate the holiday is through outdoor decorations, coming only second to candy, the survey found.

Similarly, a LendingTree survey released earlier this month found that 87% of consumers plan to spend on Halloween this year, a 16% increase from last year, with about 40% saying they'll spend on outdoor decorations. retaildive.com

First-Ever National Costco Union Contract
Teamsters union reaches national contract with Costco
The Teamsters union, representing more than 18,000 workers, said it had ratified on Friday a national contract with Costco Wholesale Corp.

The first-ever national agreement provides members with significant wage improvements over the next three years and a substantial increase in pension contributions by Costco, the International Brotherhood of Teamsters said in a statement.

In June, the union had rejected the company's initial contract offer by a vote of 93%, the union said. "This is an earth-shaking win for Costco workers and the American labor movement. Corporations like Sysco, UPS, and Amazon remain on notice," Teamsters General President Sean O'Brien said. reuters.com

Clorox recalls 37 million cleaning products over contamination concerns

Gap and Foot Locker remove all Kanye West merchandise

The Children's Place gets its second CFO in 2 years

In Case You Missed it

Returnless Refunds: 4 Risks & How to Mitigate Them

By: Michele Marvin, Vice President of Marketing, Appriss Retail

Download Order Claims: A Growing Source of Ecommerce Fraud.


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Only 18% of Retailers Optimize Return Rates
for Major Product Categories

According to new survey findings from Appriss Retail and Incisiv, the ongoing growth of ecommerce is transforming how retailers must manage returns

IRVINE, Calif. - Oct. 26, 2022 - Appriss Retail, an industry leader in data science that transforms the consumer purchase cycle, today announced the results of a new survey in partnership with Incisiv. The "2022 State of the Industry: Returns as an Engagement Strategy" report found that retailers who treat returns with a "one-size-fits-all" approach will miss out on important engagement opportunities.

The survey asked over 130 retailers about their outlooks regarding returns as a customer engagement opportunity, as well as their challenges, capabilities and future plans for strategically improving overall returns performance.

Online order return rates are three to four times higher than store-bought purchases

The growth of ecommerce has increased return rates significantly, but many retailers have not adjusted their returns strategy accordingly. A large majority (69%) of retailers are still treating returns as "a cost of doing business," despite recognizing the benefits of optimizing returns management. In fact, results from the survey showed that:

Return rates are growing faster than revenue growth rates for 91% of retailers.
Most retailers (69%) lack a good understanding of the root cause of their returns.
Only 29% of retailers have an end-to-end strategic returns management program in place.

Retailers see the value in optimizing returns but lack follow-through

Optimizing returns is a requirement for long-term profitability and customer loyalty. In fact, 42% of shoppers will stop supporting a retailer after multiple retailer-induced returns. Retailers understand the importance of improving returns performance but there is a major gap between intent and execution. The report found that:

Reducing return rates is a top priority for 83% of retailers but only 21% believe their current processes are effective at doing so.

Similarly, 77% of retailers are interested in optimizing the cost of reverse logistics but only 29% are currently achieving towards this goal.

Despite 64% of retailers reporting that returns are a problem they have been tasked to address, only 27% have an executive responsible for overall returns performance.

To learn more about how retailers can use returns intelligence to convert returns into engagement opportunities, please see the full report or visit https://apprissretail.com

Click here to read the full press release






October is Cybersecurity Awareness Month

Weekly Topic: Ransomware

Reporting Ransomware

Every ransomware incident should be reported to the U.S. government. Victims of ransomware incidents can report their incident to the FBI, CISA, or the U.S. Secret Service. A victim only needs to report their incident once to ensure that all the other agencies are notified.

CISA is the nation's cyber defense center dedicated to preventing and responding to cyber incidents. You can report incidents through CISA's reporting tool. Additionally, organizations should report anomalous cyber activity and/or cyber incidents 24/7 to report@cisa.gov or (888) 282-0870.

Learn more about ransomware here

Online Liquor Store Targeted by FTC Over Breach
FTC Targets Drizly & CEO Over Cybersecurity Failures That Led to Data Breach
The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) this week announced an administrative complaint against online alcohol marketplace Drizly and its CEO, James Cory Rellas, over the company's poor data security practices.

The FTC acted on the company's security failures that led to a data breach impacting the personal information of over 2.5 million individuals, and which occurred even though Drizly and Rellas were informed of existing security issues two years prior.

Because the company failed to implement strong protections for customer data, the FTC is now requiring Drizzly to destroy unnecessary data and to collect less information from its customers, and binds Rellas to specific data security requirements.

"Our proposed order against Drizly not only restricts what the company can retain and collect going forward but also ensures the CEO faces consequences for the company's carelessness. CEOs who take shortcuts on security should take note," FTC director Samuel Levine said.

The Boston-based Drizly, which was acquired by Uber in 2021, operates an online store where individuals of legal drinking age can order beer, wine, and alcohol at retailers, for delivery.

In 2018, after a Drizly employee posted a set of credentials on GitHub, hackers accessed the company's servers and deployed cryptocurrency miners. Two years later, a hacker compromised a Drizly employee's account, accessed corporate GitHub credentials, and stole customer information.

The FTC is requiring Drizly to limit its data collection practices, destroy unnecessary data, and implement a comprehensive information security program to ensure that it can prevent similar security incidents from occurring.  securityweek.com

Stress & Burnout Overwhelming Cybersecurity Teams
Cybersecurity teams are reaching their breaking point. We should all be worried

Stress and burnout are having a massive impact on cybersecurity teams, leaving people and businesses more vulnerable than ever.

Cybersecurity professionals are "reaching their breaking point" as ransomware attacks increase and create new risks for people and businesses. A global study of 1,100 cybersecurity professionals by Mimecast found that one-third are considering leaving their role in the next two years due to stress and burnout.

The report found that rising rates of cybercrime and mounting media attention around cyberattacks are placing intense pressure on cybersecurity teams, with many fearing their will lose their jobs as a result of a cyberattack and others struggling to cope with the growing strain.

Mimecast said cybersecurity teams face "a pressure cooker of ongoing attacks, disruption, and burnout" that is making it even more difficult to attract and retain much-needed cybersecurity professionals to keep businesses secure.

Speaking to ZDNET, Johan Dreyer, EMEA CTO at Mimecast, said the impact of under-staffed IT security teams would have a "domino effect" on IT teams "across the whole sector" unless action is taken to address the issues faced by the industry.

Dreyer added that ransomware, payment fraud, corporate espionage, intellectual property theft, and disinformation campaigns had all increased "at an alarming rate" in the past few months alone, leaving businesses and consumers even more vulnerable to cyber criminals.

"The demand for cyber skills is more significant than ever, and a shortage of workers with the required expertise has created a constantly increasing skills deficit within the workplace," Dreyer told ZDNET. zdnet.com

All Tricks, No Treats When it Comes to Cyber Risks
Cybersecurity Risks & Stats This Spooky Season

From ransomware to remote workers to cyber-extortion gangs to Fred, cybersecurity concerns can keep you awake this season and all seasons.

AdvertisementDespite the horrors that accompany the Halloween season, for many people, nothing is more terrifying than ... cybersecurity risks. From professional Russian hackers to simple-but-dangerous human error, here are the horrors keeping business leaders up at night.

Ransomware's Villain is Back

Spooky stat from cyber pros: Nearly two-thirds (63%) of security pros say an increasing number of ransomware incidents are driving their cybersecurity decisions.

Digital Transformation, Remote Work & The Great Unknown

Spooky stat from cyber pros: Two-thirds (66%) have difficulty monitoring user activity in remote/hybrid settings and 60% admit they have difficulty protecting a remote workforce.

Human Error: The Killer You Know

Spooky stat from cyber pros: Nearly three-quarters (74%) of cyber pros say protecting their network from insider threats is a top strategic priority this year.

Escalating Cyber Conflict May Have Nuclear Consequences

Spooky stat from cyber pros: There's no spooky stat for this one. It's too spooky. darkreading.com

Phishing Attack Hits LinkedIn Users
LinkedIn Phishing Spoof Bypasses Google Workspace Security

A credential-stealing attack that spoofed LinkedIn and targeted a national travel organization skates past DMARC and other email protections.

A phishing email purportedly from LinkedIn with the subject line "We noticed some unusual activity" was discovered targeting users at a travel organization, in an attempt to pilfer their credentials on the social-media platform.

The phishing campaign slipped past Google's email security controls after cheating email authentication checks via SFP and DMARC, according to Armorblox, whose email security system at the victim organization found and stopped the attack pointed at some 500 user inboxes.

"The main call-to-action button (Secure my account) included within the email contains a bad URL and took victims to a fake landing page. This fake landing page ... mimicked a legitimate LinkedIn sign in page that included LinkedIn logos, language, and illustrations that mirrored true LinkedIn branding," Armorblox wrote in a post about the attack campaign. darkreading.com

To retain cybersecurity professionals, keep remote work as an option

Windows Mark of the Web Zero-Days Remain Patchless, Under Exploit



Canada Grapples with Retail Crime Surge
Toronto pharmacists sound alarm as armed robberies more than double
Armed robberies targeting Toronto-area pharmacies have more than doubled, as gun-toting gangs looking for drugs to sell are repeatedly raiding part of our health-care system, according to a CTV News Investigation.

Pharmacists across Ontario say they are seeing robberies happen almost every day -- sometimes multiple times a day. One Toronto pharmacy was robbed more than 14 times, its proprietor said.

And the money that can be made selling stolen pills is driving other crimes like carjacking, which is one way the criminals obtain getaway cars, while putting more potentially hazardous opioids on the street.

Toronto Police say they investigated 49 pharmacy robberies in 2021 in their jurisdiction. In 2022, they have taken carriage of 101 pharmacy robberies so far -- more than double, with the year not yet out.

It's not clear what precisely is driving the surge, he said, but one factor could be an increase in price for the stolen pills. In about one in 10 carjackings in Toronto -- already at more than 130 this year -- the car was discovered to be connected to a robbery of a pharmacy, he said.

Overall, 38 per cent of the robberies in 2022 have been cleared by way of arrest, Harris said. Police and pharmacists have issued warnings as far west as Calgary, saying the pills can play a role in overdose deaths.

"Retail crime and that includes pharmacy robberies specifically continues to be a problem nationwide," said Angeline Ng, of the Ontario Pharmacists Association.

Toronto Police say they are working on tracking more thieves and recommending security measures for pharmacists like security cameras. Some told CTV News Toronto they have spent more than $50,000 on renovations to create a buzzer system and even bulletproof glass. But some worry that turning pharmacies into fortresses will drive patients away - making it harder to care for them, which is why many got into the business in the first place. toronto.ctvnews.ca

   RELATED: Vancouver, WA: Police put special emphasis on retail theft
Retail Impact of Canada's Handgun Sale Freeze
Handgun sale freeze 'final culmination of disappointment' for Alberta retailer
An Alberta firearms retailer says the national "freeze" on the sale of handguns that went into effect Friday is unfair to lawful gun owners and won't make a difference to violent crime rates.

Under the regulations, people can no longer buy, sell or transfer handguns within Canada, or bring new handguns into the country.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said Friday that the number of handguns in Canada has increased roughly 70 per cent since 2010, while the number of firearms-related homicides has gone up around 40 per cent since 2011, with handguns most commonly used for these crimes.

'A chill through the entire industry'

Ranges, sport shooting clubs and firearms-related businesses "will slowly be forced to shut down" without new purchases, said Shandro.

At The Shooting Edge, Cox said at least revenue from its indoor shooting range will continue, but other retailers aren't so fortunate and are stuck with thousands of dollars in inventory they can't move.

"Obviously when there's a story like this, it puts a chill through the entire industry," said Cox. "We don't know what's going to happen ... but it's devastating."

He believes there are ways to limit access to firearms that don't come at the expense of lawful firearm owners. He would want to see money spent on these regulations instead put toward stopping the smuggling of firearms into Canada at the border. cbc.ca

   Freeze on handgun sales takes effect in Canada

   Gunshots heard in Toronto just as Canada imposes handgun freeze

Canadian Retail Sales Recover
Canada Retail Sales Rise 0.7% in August
Retail sales in Canada unexpectedly recovered in August, led by food and beverage trade, leaving the door open for the Bank of Canada to continue raising rates.

Sales increased 0.7% in August to a seasonally adjusted 61.76 billion Canadian dollars, the equivalent of about $44.87 billion, Statistics Canada said Friday. Market expectations were for a 0.1% decline in sales for the month, according to economists at TD Securities.

The statistics agency said early indicators from companies suggest that retail sales fell 0.5% in September, though the figure is an estimate and will be revised. marketwatch.com

For Holiday 2022 Canadians are More Price Sensitive and Shopping Earlier
More Canadians are planning to take advantage of deals, holiday sales, and promotions and have started to shop earlier to take full advantage of the best deals and pricing, according to the Retail Council of Canada's (RCC) 5th annual RCC X Leger Holiday Shopping Survey.

Walmart Canada opens first new store in Alberta since 2015

Canadian Consumer Expectations for 'Fast' Ecomm Deliveries Not What Many Expected

COVID Update

Canada Hasn't Quite Reached the Pandemic Finish Line
WHO says the end of the pandemic is in sight, but is Canada on the right track?
A month ago, the director-general of the World Health Organization made optimistic statements about the pandemic's end, stating that a finish line was on the horizon. "We are not there yet, but the end is in sight," said Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus during a media briefing on Sept. 14.

Ghebreyesus emphasized that now is the time to "run harder" and now would be the "worst time" to stop running. He specified that countries should not ease up on multiple health interventions and policies.

In Canada, the latest COVID-19 update on Oct. 14 indicates that about 20,000 new cases were reported the week prior. Between Oct. 10 and Oct. 17, the number of people hospitalized increased from 3,550 to 3,875, following a steady upward trend in hospitalizations since the start of October.

While Canada has seen some success in combating the pandemic, due to being able to procure vaccines and implement border control measures and masking mandates that have since been lifted, several areas urgently need to be improved on, or the pandemic will be prolonged in the country, infectious disease experts told CTVNews.ca. ctvnews.ca

Pardoning Canadians That Were Arrested for Breaking COVID Protocols?
Canadian leader considers dropping COVID lockdown charges, apologizes to unvaccinated
The premier of Alberta, Canada, said she is working on a plan to pardon residents who were fined or arrested over breaking coronavirus protocols, and apologized to unvaccinated Canadians who faced "discrimination."

"I'm deeply sorry for anyone who was inappropriately subjected to discrimination as a result of their vaccine status,"Premier Danielle Smith said Saturday. "I am deeply sorry for any government employee that was fired from their job because of their vaccine status, and I welcome them back if they want to come back."

Smith's comment marks the first time the leader of a Canadian province has apologized for discriminating against the unvaccinated, according to Rebel News. news.yahoo.com

Canada general was warned military's vax mandate was unnecessary, possibly illegal

Facing a fall COVID surge, Canadians urged to get bivalent booster shots

Toronto, ON: $750K worth of goods stolen during violent jewelry store robbery
Toronto police have released surveillance video of a violent robbery at a Rexdale jewelry store this past spring where the suspects allegedly made off with $750,000 worth of stolen goods. In a news release, investigators said four men wearing construction vests who had their identities concealed with masks attended the unidentified store and waited for an employee to open the door.

When an employee did open the door, all four men rushed inside, police said. The video appears to show one of the suspects frantically dragging the employee through a gated security door before dropping him and running further into the store.

As the suspect runs out of frame, the employee is then dragged by one of his accomplices as another appears to draw a firearm from his waistband and points it at him. At that time, police said, the gun-wielding suspect made demands for cash and jewelry.

The suspects then appear to ransack the store, grabbing jewelry from display cases and placing them into duffle bags. At one point, one of the two employees in the store -- who police have blurred the identities of -- is kicked multiple times by one of the suspects.

The suspects eventually fled the scene in a stolen vehicle with a "large" quantity of jewelry, which police told CTV News Toronto is valued at $750,000. The employees suffered non-life-threatening injuries. toronto.ctvnews.ca

Calgary police investigate NW pizza store shooting during attempted robbery
An attempted robbery turned into a shooting early Thursday, sending a man to hospital. Calgary police said the suspect attempted to rob TJ's Pizza at Centre Street and 19th Avenue Northwest at about 2:20 a.m.

The suspect threatened employees with a gun and demanded cash, and when the employees in the restaurant attempted to scare the suspect away, an altercation occurred, according to police.

"Upon being pushed out of the restaurant, the suspect fired shots at the front door, resulting in broken glass. The suspect then fled the scene prior to police arrival," Calgary police said in a written statement.

The victim was taken to hospital with minor injuries due to the glass being shattered from the gun shot. globalnews.ca

Toronto, Canada: Security Camaras capture the exact moment Toronto bike thief realizes he's busted
A popular Toronto retail store known for its wide selection of high-end bicycles, bike accessories, apparel and the like is out nearly $30,000 after an early morning robbery that had a bit of a comedic twist (or will, if the business is able to recoup its losses). "This morning at 5:45 a.m. this man broke into our shop and stole three bikes," wrote the business on Sunday evening. "We have photo and video evidence. A police report has been filed. Somebody somewhere knows who he is. If that's you, please reach out, as any information you can provide would be appreciated." blogto.com

Toronto police charge 4 boys, three aged 14, in string of armed carjackings & robberies
Toronto continues to deal with a rise in carjackings, with 188 reported so far this year compared to 102 in all of 2021, a Toronto police spokesperson said.

Oromocto, NB, Canada: The Oromocto RCMP seeking 2 suspects in Grocery Store thefts

London, ON, Canada: Man arrested after threatening security with hammer

Banff, AB, Canada: Three Thieves use bear spray to rob Canada Goose store in Banff

Owners of Winnipeg c-store assaulted, 1 seriously, after confronting thieves

Employees at Kamloops liquor store bear sprayed during robbery

Hamilton police seek man after convenience store robbery

2 same-day alleged armed robberies at pharmacies in Whitchurch Stouffville

RCMP searching for Onion Lake man in connection with armed robbery

Customer fought with robber at Sudbury Jem Mart store

Nanaimo gas station robber gets robbed, both arrested

View Canadian Connections Archives






Amazon's Counterfeit Crackdown Continues
Amazon and FELCO file a joint lawsuit against bad actors selling counterfeit pruning shears, in a continued effort to crack down on fake goods

Amazon and FELCO have filed a joint lawsuit to protect customers and the authenticity of FELCO gardening products.

When counterfeiters infringed on FELCO's trademark rights by attempting to sell counterfeit pruning shears, the company called on Amazon to help them hold the bad actors accountable. Amazon's Counterfeit Crimes Unit and FELCO filed a joint lawsuit against 39 bad actors who have infringed on the trademark rights of FELCO and attempted to sell counterfeit pruning shears.

Amazon protects the brands you love most by partnering with brands of all sizes to conduct investigations, refer cases to law enforcement, and pursue litigation to seize counterfeit products and get justice for rights owners. Amazon worked with FELCO to identify defendants who were falsely advertising and attempting to sell counterfeit FELCO-branded products and deceive customers.

"We take responsibility for protecting customers, brands and our store from counterfeit products ," said Kebharu Smith, director of Amazon's Counterfeit Crimes Unit. "We appreciate the partnership with FELCO to find and take action against these fraudsters."

Last year, Amazon's Counterfeit Crimes Unit sued or referred over 600 bad actors for investigation in the U.S., UK, EU, and China. In the fight to ensure consumers only purchase authentic and safe products, the Counterfeit Crimes Unit has established its reputation as a global partner to brands and law enforcement through its aggressive enforcement against counterfeiters and the removal of illegal products from the supply chain. Read about the Counterfeit Crimes Unit's previous actions. aboutamazon.com

10K+ Counterfeits Removed from Amazon
A behind-the-scenes look at Amazon's Counterfeit Crimes Unit at work

Intelligence from Amazon's Counterfeit Crimes Unit helped law enforcement remove more than 10,000 counterfeit automotive grilles from the global supply chain.

Amazon premiered a new video that documents law enforcement's tireless pursuit of counterfeiters.

The video was filmed on location in Walnut, California, and follows along as U.S. Homeland Security Investigations and the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department execute search warrants at a suspected counterfeiter's residence and a warehouse where fake auto parts are stored.

Intelligence from Amazon led to the joint operation and resulted in the seizure of more than 10,000 counterfeit automotive grilles worth $1.2 million destined for multiple retailers across the supply chain. Taking counterfeits out of circulation protects Amazon's customers and consumers everywhere.

In addition to holding bad actors accountable, Amazon's brand protection strategy includes powerful and highly effective proactive efforts to protect our store, and industry-leading tools enabling rights owners to partner with us to better protect their brands.

Learn more about Amazon's work and tools to protect brands and fight counterfeiting. aboutamazon.com

Amazon Delivery Driver Killed by Dog
Amazon delivery driver found dead after an apparent dog attack

Deputies in Ray County, Missouri, shot and killed two aggressive dogs after the man's body was found. His wounds were consistent with an animal attack, the sheriff said.

A delivery driver for Amazon was found dead after an apparent animal attack Monday in Missouri, and deputies shot and killed two aggressive dogs, the Ray County sheriff said.

Deputies were called to a home in Excelsior Springs, a town of around 10,000, around 7 p.m. after neighbors reported that an Amazon van had been parked there for several hours, Sheriff Ray Childers said.

A man's body was found in a yard, as were two highly aggressive dogs, he said. Deputies shot and killed the animals. The man's identity was not immediately disclosed. nbcnews.com

Amazon will now let users pay with Venmo at checkout







Lancaster County, NE: 3 Florida men arrested in $9 million-dollar theft ring of stolen meat across Midwest
Three Florida men have been arrested for allegedly stealing $9 million worth of frozen meat across the midwestern United States, authorities said Tuesday. Yoslany Leyva Del Sol, Ledier Machin Andino and Delvis L. Fuentes, all from the Miami area, face charges of money laundering and transportation of stolen goods, according to Homeland Security Investigations (HSI). The trio are the alleged masterminds behind what HSI described as a Florida-based "highly sophisticated organized criminal enterprise" targeting beef and pork packaging plants in the Midwest. The investigation into the multimillion-dollar theft ring began in June after several semi-trailers and loads of frozen beef -- valued at an estimated $1 million -- were stolen in Nebraska's Lancaster County. The Lancaster County Sheriff's Office worked with HSI's Omaha field office to identify approximately 45 thefts that occurred since June 2021 across Nebraska, Iowa, Minnesota, South Dakota, North Dakota, and Wisconsin, totaling $9 million in losses, according to HSI. Investigators determined that an organized criminal enterprise set up in Miami was responsible for the thefts and, on Oct. 20, identified and arrested three prime suspects -- Del Sol, Andino and Fuentes. As the men were taken into custody in Miami, investigators also recovered three tractor trailers with stolen merchandise valued at $550,000, according to HSI. "This investigation is ongoing and part of the HSI Omaha and Lancaster County Sheriff's Office Major Crimes Task Force," HSI said in a statement Tuesday, announcing the arrests. abcnews.go.com

Los Angeles, CA: Van used to smash into Chanel store in Beverly Grove area
A van was used to smash through the security gate of a Chanel store in the Beverly Grove area Tuesday. Authorities received a call reporting the incident around 2:45 a.m. in the 100 block of Robertson Boulevard, a Los Angeles Police Department spokesperson confirmed. Video showed the abandoned van still partially inside the business after ramming head-on into the store's security gate. Investigators believe as many as four suspects wearing face masks fled the scene but it was unclear what property may have been taken. The same store was burglarized back in July. Thieves used a vehicle to ram through the security door in that incident as well.  ktla.com

Medford, OR: Man accused of using a handsaw as weapon during Grange Co-op robbery
A California man faces a string of felony charges accusing him of threatening an employee with a handsaw during a robbery of the south Medford Grange Co-op. Thomas Lee Call, 26, of Fortuna, California, was charged with first-degree robbery, first-degree theft, second-degree burglary and unlawful use of a weapon for allegedly loading up a shopping cart with more than $1,800 in merchandise from the Grange Co-op warehouse, at 2531 S. Pacific Highway in Medford, the afternoon of Oct. 15, according to Jackson County Circuit Court filings. During the warehouse robbery, Call allegedly pulled an orange handsaw from his cart and used the tool to threaten a store staff member who attempted to grab the cart containing boxes of Carhartt clothing, according to an affidavit filed by the Jackson County Sheriff's Office. The employee had been roughly a yard away when Call allegedly "feigned as if he was going to strike" the employee. The store employee backed away as the suspect made his way through the retail area with the cart full of merchandise.  news.yahoo.com

Murfreesboro, TN: Suspects Steal Over $9K of Merchandise From Finish Line Store

American Canyon, CA: $1,000 worth of merchandise stolen from Walmart; prior felony convictions

Leesburg, VA: Homeless man jailed after allegedly trying to steal $830 worth of baseball cards

Walton County, FL: Man wanted for stealing $500 in tools from Freeport Ace Hardware store

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Robberies, Incidents & Thefts

Longwood, FL: Jewelry store claims burglars stole $400K worth of merchandise
According to Albert Pagan, owner of Certified Jewelry Design off West 434 in Longwood, thieves broke into his building early Monday morning. Pagan says he was alerted by police after the owner of an adjacent business, Longwood Shoe Repair, noticed their store had some damage. Pagan believes the thieves broke into that store's roof to get to his business. Pagan says the thieves cut through cement, steel and a reinforced wall to get into the vault where he stores all of his jewelry. "But now we've lost everything we've ever worked for and our life savings," Pagan said. "We are just going to keep on going and start over." "There were things in there he had been collecting since he started," said Reece Pagan, Albert Pagan's son. "They were the first projects he ever made. His first bracelet, the first ring he ever made. He had been saving that and they took that too. They took things that had more than monetary value." wesh.com

Seattle, WA: Alleged armed robber holds up Pink Gorilla Games, store robbed for 4th time in 6 months
A popular video game store in the Chinatown International District (CID) was the target of crime again Monday night. This time, the thief reportedly confronted workers at Pink Gorilla Games with a gun while pretending to check out. Owners said it's the first time in 17 years there has been an armed robbery, though the store has been broken into four times in the last six months. The suspect then demanded cash and collectible cards. The armed robbery was captured on store surveillance video. Owners said thieves are getting away with thousands of dollars worth of merchandise. "It's feeling terrible. I'm feeling really terrible about it," said owner Cody Spencer. "It feels very uncertain like I feel uncertain staffing this place now." The store even offered a $10,000 reward in the past with no luck. "The sentiment is anger," said Pink Gorilla Owner Cody Spencer. "I work almost every single day of the week and it's things like this the break-ins, armed robberies that completely make you think what I am doing, like what the hell is the point." komonews.com

Temple, TX: Police search for suspect in armed robbery wearing WWE belt
The Temple Police Department is searching for the suspect in connection to an armed robbery Tuesday evening. Officers were dispatched at 9:49 p.m. Oct. 26 in the 1100 block of S. First St where the suspect entered the store, displayed a gun and demanded money. After taking an undisclosed amount of cash, he fled on-foot. No injuries have been reported. The suspect is described as a Black man wearing a blue long sleeve Nike shirt, WWE belt, glasses and no shoes. kwtx.com

Atlanta, GA: Bungling burglar caught on camera dropping safe on foot while stealing from Buckhead restaurant
A masked man who broke into a Buckhead restaurant early Tuesday underestimated the weight of a safe he had stolen, and dropped it in a rear parking lot. Security camera video shows him limping around. "Looks like he hurt himself getting out of the building with the safe. It looks like he dropped it on his foot." Buttermilk Kitchen owner Suzanne Vizethann said to Channel 2′s Tom Regan. The restaurant owner says the thieves made off with 2,800 cash stored in the safe. She doubts that they will be able to crack it open. She says she's also thankful for all the community support they've received.  wsbtv.com

Paducah, KY: Three teens charged in connection to convenience store robbery

Matteson, IL: Up to $25K reward for information on armed robbery of USPS mail carrier in Matteson

Sydney, Australia: Police Officers tackle alleged gunman after Carnes Hill jewelry store robbery



AT&T - Gloucester Township, NJ - Armed Robbery
C-Store - Birmingham, AL - Armed Robbery
C-Store - Paducah, KY - Armed Robbery
C-Store - Temple, TX - Armed Robbery
C-Store - Jackson, MS - Armed Robbery
C-Store - Sioux City, IA - Armed Robbery
C-Store - Raymond, WA - Armed Robbery
C-Store - Salt Lake City, UT - Armed Robbery
C-Store - Culver City, CA - Armed Robbery
Clothing - Murfreesboro, TN - Robbery
Collectables- Leesburg, VA - Robbery
CVS - Santa Barbara, CA - Burglary
Dollar - Granger, IN - Armed Robbery
Gaming - Seattle, WA - Armed Robbery
Grocery - Brattleboro, VT - Armed Robbery
Handbags - Los Angeles, CA - Burglary
Hardware - Honolulu, HI - Armed Robbery
Hardware - Medford, OR - Armed Robbery
Jewelry Longwood, FL - Burglary
Jewelry -Wethersfield, CT - Burglary
Jewelry - Bethesda MD - Burglary
Jewelry - Haywood, CA - Burglary
Jewelry - Jacksonville, NC - Robbery
Jewelry - Fairview Heights, IL - Robbery
Jewelry - Jacksonville, FL - Robbery
Jewelry - Newark, DE - Robbery
Jewelry - Pineville, NC - Robbery
Jewelry - Tampa, FL - Robbery
Jewelry - Bethesda MD - Burglary
Restaurant - Butler County, OH - Robbery
Restaurant - Atlanta, GA - Burglary
Tobacco - El Paso, TX - Burglary
Vape - Blountsville, AL - Armed Robbery
Walmart - Waterbury, CT - Robbery
Walmart - Atmore, AL - Robbery


Daily Totals:
• 26 robberies
• 9 burglaries
• 0 shootings
• 0 killed

Click to enlarge map



None to report.

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District Loss Prevention Manager
New York, NY - posted October 21
We at Urban Outfitters Inc, (Urban Outfitters, Anthropologie, Free People, FP Movement, Terrain, Menu /Venues, NUULY) are seeking a candidate in a fast-paced retail environment to fill our open position for District Loss Prevention Manager / NYC. This position entails overseeing stores in Manhattan as well as management of the city's LP Agent -Guard Team. This person must have excellent people skills, the ability to effectively manage a LP team while simultaneously providing flawless LP support to our store team members. We offer an excellent benefits package, excellent starting salary and a potential bonus based on shrink results. Please apply with us online.

Area Asset Protection Manager - South New Jersey
South New Jersey - posted October 11
In this role, you will embody Do The Right Thing by protecting People, Assets, and Brands. You will work in an energized, fast paced environment focused on creating a safe environment for our employees, teams, and customers; this is critical to driving our Brand Power, Enduring Customer Relationships, and exuding our commitment to Team and Values...

Field Loss Prevention Manager
Seattle, WA - posted September 27
The Field Loss Prevention Manager (FLPM) coordinates Loss Prevention and Safety Programs intended to protect Staples assets and ensure a safe work environment within Staples Retail locations. FLPM's are depended on to be an expert in auditing, investigating, and training...

Sr. Manager, Brand & Asset Protection - West
Pacific Northwest or California - posted August 29
As the Senior Manager of Brand and Asset Protection for North America, you will part of an innovative Asset Protection team, whose mission is to prevent, identify and mitigate risks to our business. You will support with the creation of foundational asset protection programming and will lead its delivery to our North American store base...

Region AP Manager (Florida - Treasure Coast Market)
Jacksonville, FL - posted June 17
Responsible for managing asset protection programs designed to minimize shrink, associate and customer liability accidents, bad check and cash loss, and safety incidents for stores within assigned region. This position will develop the framework for the groups' response to critical incidents, investigative needs, safety concerns and regulatory agency visits...

Corporate Risk Manager
Seattle, WA / Tacoma, WA / Portland, OR - posted June 14
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....

Physical Security Operations Center Leader
Columbia, MD - posted June 8
The primary purpose of this role is to partner, lead and manage a Central Station/Physical Security Operations Center driving operational execution and enhancements to ensure effectiveness and a positive customer experience. This individual is also responsible for leading a team of operators providing professional and accurate responses...

Loss Prevention Specialists (Store Detective)
Albany, NY; Hyannis, MA; Burlington, VT; Hartford, CT
- posted May 6
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...

Retail Asset Protection Associate
Medford, MA; Brockton, MA; East Springfield, MA - posted May 6
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...


Regional Loss Prevention Auditor
Multiple Locations - posted April 20
The Regional Loss Prevention Auditor (RLPA) is responsible for conducting operational audits and facilitating training meetings in our clients' locations. The audit examines operational controls, loss prevention best practices, and customer service-related opportunities.

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Sometimes the best reaction is no reaction as the old expression "Silence is Golden" is more applicable than most think. Especially in a situation where you're unfamiliar with the surroundings, the people, the cultural beliefs, or the boundaries. The key is having the self-discipline not to react or speak. It can help prevent you from going too far or showing anger and it just may keep you from destroying a relationship or your reputation. Reacting is easy - listening and bidding your time isn't.

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