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 February 26, 2016

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Today's Leaders Educating Tomorrow's


Opening Comments
Gus Downing


WG Security Products
Ed Wolfe, VP Business Development


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Cliff Rodriguez was promoted to Loss Prevention Director for Chanel, Inc.
Cliff has been at Chanel since June of 2011. He came to Chanel as the first Loss Prevention Manager and second employee of that department. He was promoted to the Associate Director of Retail and Events and have expanded the LP department with two Regional LP Managers overseeing the East and West coast retail boutiques. Cliff is a career long security and loss prevention professional that has worked in big box, fashion, grocery, and luxury retail. Congratulations Cliff!

 

 



"Restoring JCP To Its Glory Days"
Former LP Exec. & Now CEO of JCP, Marvin Ellison Delivers 4Q Results that Top Expectations
All Quiet on the VPLP Job Hunt - Who'll be the next VP of LP?

Few companies, except home improvement chains such as Home Depot Inc and Lowe's Cos Inc, have been able to beat Wall Street estimates amid a pullback in spending on discretionary items. "Another solid result in a flat out tough 4Q for department stores ... CEO Ellison has the right demeanor, discipline, and business acumen to restore JCP to its glory days," Sterne Agee analyst Renato Basanta wrote in a note.

Total sales rose a better-than-expected 2.6 percent, to $4 billion, while same-store sales rose 4.1 percent, in line with analysts' expectations.

Marvin R. Ellison, chief executive officer, said, "We are very pleased with our performance for the fourth quarter and full year. We are also pleased that we delivered strong fourth-quarter results while effectively managing our inventory, which finished the year up 2.6 percent. I would like to thank our over 100,000 associates who embrace our strategy and come to work each day focused on driving sales and providing excellent customer service.

"Contrary to some of the negative macro data that has been discussed in the marketplace, our data shows that this mid-tier consumer has continued growth possibilities in 2016," Chief Executive Marvin Ellison said on a conference call. foxbusiness.com  wwd.com yahoo.com

Editor's Note: Now the question is who does he deliver to the VP of LP position? Our opinion is he already has it locked and someone's waiting for a bonus payout. Just a thought.

Where Have the Shoppers Gone?
The Trump Impact? Is he impacting retail sales as much as he is the election?

Across channels and regions, it seems that consumers have mostly fled the market. And while retailers are blaming the weather for soft traffic and lousy fourth-quarter results, a more frugal shopper - at all income levels - continues to be keen on bargains and shopping online. Meanwhile, a presidential election year is also emerging as a distraction for consumers.

For now, retailers struggle to post solid financial results amid a promotional market aimed at luring shoppers into stores.

Since last fall, presidential hopefuls on both sides of the aisle have consumed the attention of consumers. Social media channels including Facebook, Twitter and YouTube have been flooded with various perspectives, rants and op-eds on the which candidate would be best.

This election cycle, though, appears to be different as more people seem to be keying into messages that focus on income inequality, the vanishing middle class and other social issues. And the political chatter is not limited to social media.

Analyst Gabriella Santaniello, president and founder of A-Line Partners, takes a systematic approach to store visits, which takes her to various markets all over the U.S. "I've never seen anything like this," she said of the political buzzing. "I'll be in a store and sales associates will start chatting about the election or about a specific candidate. It is unusual and unprecedented." Editor's Note: If he wasn't in the election would we all be watching and talking like we are? I think not. wwd.com

Wal-Mart Cuts More Staff at Headquarters
Retail giant laid off more than 100 employees this week

In October, Wal-Mart laid off 450 people from its Bentonville, Ark., headquarters, then the company's warehouse chain Sam's Club cut about 150 positions in January. The company also recently closed more than 100 U.S. stores that employed thousands of hourly workers.

This week's cuts came in the information systems department, part of the retailer's recently created Walmart Technology group, which merged staff that works on the company's website and store technology staff.

This week's layoffs will likely hit hardest among Northwest Arkansas's community of South Asian immigrants, mostly drawn to the area by software and technology jobs at Wal-Mart or the company's vendors.  wsj.com

Sears laying off 250 in administrative offices
The parent of struggling retailers Sears and Kmart said Thursday it eliminated 250 positions after posting fourth-quarter losses following a dismal holiday shopping season. The layoffs at Sears Holdings represent a "mix of positions in various units and roles across the organization," spokesman Chris Brathwaite told the Tribune. Brathwaite also said 151 open corporate office positions will not be filled.

While the company has several administrative outposts, including locations in New York, Seattle and a call center in Troy, Mich., the bulk of the layoffs and the open positions that will not be filled will come from its Hoffman Estates headquarters. chicagotribune.com

Sears CEO Lambert says its unfair to criticize
Lampert, chairman and chief executive officer, said in his annual letter to shareholders: "Because of Sears and Kmart's long-standing history and cultural impact, we are targeted for criticism when our results are poor. But it is unfair to evaluate our approach through the rearview mirror without acknowledging the changing circumstances in our industry as well as our bold attempts to change the way we do business to meet this changing reality."

While questions remain over the long-term survival of Sears, retailers across the board have been rushing to adapt to a landscape shaken by disinterested consumers, economic turmoil and changing shopping patterns, especially the shift to online and mobile shopping.  Editor's Note: It may be unfair but it is reality. wwd.com

Shoplifting Video Going Viral on YouTube today
Walmart customer who films shoplifter apprehension banned from store in Wilmington, N.C.

A North Carolina man recorded a shoplifter inside Walmart's Wilmington location, only to be verbally harassed, threatened with arrest and banned by a clueless employee of the SuperCenter last Friday afternoon.

Jon Andrade thought he was doing the retail giant a favor by using his cell phone to capture a petty theft, when Walmart employees turned on him and demanded that he leave or be arrested for criminal trespassing on private property ending the encounter by telling the man that he is "Banned." The minute and ten seconds long video below picks up when Andrade was nearly in the parking lot.

As John Andrade's wife wrote, he was just trying to be thoughtful. It's common knowledge that Walmart loses billions annually to "shrinkage" which is the retail industry's term for shoplifting: As Jon was exiting the store, he sees a woman who has shoplifted from Walmart. She had thrown down a large purse filled with items she had stolen and takes off, into the parking lot, out the front doors. My husband, who worked as a security officer for over 5 years, instantly is in the mindset to whip out his IPhone and record this woman and this incident happening, thinking maybe he could help out; Not to mention in this day and age, the majority of people who see a crazy incident at Walmart are going to instantly grab their smartphone and hit record.

A Walmart employee, ironically wearing a "GAP" sweatshirt asks him to, "Please stop recording." That's where the pleasantries ended.

The First Amendment protects photography as a pre-cursor to expressive speech - such as Joe Andrade's post which is going viral on YouTube today - and when in public, jurisprudence says that there is no expectation of privacy for anyone, police or otherwise.

This North Carolina associate has become YouTube famous for the wrong reasons, and now is going to learn (probably the hard way) when someone may or may not record video at a SuperCenter. Editor's Note: The verbal confrontation is too lengthy to post, but leave it to say it included expletives.  photographyisnotacrime.com

OSHA Fines Schwan's Global Supply Chain Over $172,000 For Employee Injuries
Fined for three repeated, four serious and one other-than-serious safety violations on Feb. 9. Agency inspectors found Schwan's exposed workers to amputation and other serious hazards, according to Insurance Journal. The company is facing more than $172,000 in fines after two workers at its Salina, Kan., facility suffered amputations in separate incidents and a third suffered lacerations and burns. During its inspections, the agency also found other safety hazards. These included workers with personal protective equipment that did not properly fit, storage of oxygen cylinders near highly combustible material, and had exit routes that did not meet height and width requirements. foodlogistics.com


Quarterly Same Store Sales Results
Foot Locker Q4 comp's up 7.9% with sales up 5%
Sprouts Farmers Market Q4 comp's up 7.4% with net sales up 21%
J.C. Penney Q4 comp's up 4.1% with sales up 2.6%
Gap Inc. Q4 Gap Global down 6%, Banana Republic down 10%, Old Navy flat
 


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Passing of a True LP Hero

Off-Duty Police Officer working as Macy's LP Detective dies of heart attack following shoplifter apprehension

Donald Pearman passed away on February 16, 2016 while working his "second job" as a Loss Prevention Detective at Macy's. Donnie, as he was known to all, started his Loss Prevention career over 25 years ago with the retailer Emporium Capwells. Donnie worked in stores from El Cerrito to the flagship store in downtown San Francisco and was always a star detective everywhere he went. Along the way, Donnie worked hard to pursue his dream of becoming a Police Officer. For the past 19 years, Donnie fulfilled his dream and was a Police Officer for the city of Pittsburg, CA. Donnie was a well respected officer, loved by both his peers as well as the community he protected. Over the years, Donnie maintained his love for Loss Prevention and worked "second jobs" for JCPenney and recently joined the Macy's team. Donnie was a Top Cop, stellar Loss Prevention Detective, loved son, devoted father and a wonderful man and cherished friend. contracostatimes.com kron4.com
 

 


 

Editor's Opinion: There will be a day when Loss Prevention and IT Security
will be one

The evolution and volume of cybercrime and the advancing development of the cybercriminal themselves will dictate that we work as one in order to combat and resolve the speed and magnitude of the risk.

As the continued siloing of LP and IT Security will actually slow the investigative response and handicap the reactive and proactive processes. Now this doesn't mean that the IT Security executive has to posses the investigative prowess. Nor does it mean the LP executive must be a programmer. But what it does mean is that both must be connected and proficient in each others worlds in order to truly defeat yesterday's gang member who is today's cybercriminal.

The news is filled with story's about gang members turning to smuggling cigarettes, counterfeiting, identity theft, skimming, and cloning cards. Most of which is headed by computer geeks pulling the strings from around the world. Obviously proving the fact that the criminals have already eliminated their silos and are now working as one. With the IT thief actually managing the street thief who the LP world has been fighting for generations.

So how long will it be before we get the message that they've combined their resources and they happen to be winning the war. The point being that the merging of our two worlds, which all of us recognize is indeed happening, will in fact continue and will one day be one, under one roof.

Wars have a tendency to dictate evolution and if current trends are indicative of where we're headed we're not winning right now. So something has to change and all of the technologies that both groups are using individually have to be connected in order to increase their strength. And the only way to do that is with the human element. Therein lies the merger into one.

Just yesterday a PwC global report showed how online fraud is actually "holding retailers back from meeting customers expectations," because retailers aren't able to match demand for same or next day shipping. Now how long do you think retailers are going to put up with that? And that's just one impact of hundreds that exist.  United we stand. Divided we fall. Just a thought.

Firms detect breaches sooner, but attackers have gotten nastier
Firms are detecting breaches nearly 30 percent sooner than before, according to a new report from Mandiant, but attackers are also getting more aggressive in their methods by demanding millions for not releasing data, or erasing all systems around them as they go.

Last year, it took an average of 146 days for a company to discover a breach, down from 205 in 2014 -- and 416 in 2011.

There are two main reasons that attacks are getting detected sooner, he said. One is that organizations are getting better at spotting them. However, despite better security, few organizations are successfully able to keep out determined attackers.

The other reason that breaches are getting spotted sooner is that the attackers are bragging more about their successful attacks. While criminals and state-sponsored attackers tend to stay quiet about their hacks in order to keep the data flowing, hacktivisits and cybervandals are looking for fame and impact. csoonline.com

Generation Z (ages 18 to 24) is twice as likely to make a mobile payment as the total population
Mobile payments & purchases will be the prevailing transactions in the near future

More than half (53%) of Gen Z respondents said they have made a mobile payment while using the Internet in the past six months. That is almost four times the rate (14%) for Baby Boomers (ages 50 to 68). Gen Y (ages 25 to 34) came in at 37%, and Gen X (35 to 49) at 27%. About one-third (31%) of Gen Z consumers agree that "making payments with a mobile device is more secure than other methods"; this is double the general population level (16%), and five times the Baby Boomer score of 6%.

The study also shows that more than half (53%) of Gen Z respondents are looking forward to paying for "more and more transactions" from mobile devices. This is twice the overall US average (27%), and higher than Gen Y (45%) and Gen X (30%). retailingtoday.com

Hey You Get Off Of My Cloud
Cloud Apps Not Ready for GDPR

As many as 88% of apps are not enterprise-ready - lacking important functionality such as security, service-level agreement and vulnerability remediation. Netskope say organizations currently have a lot of work to do when it comes to monitoring and mitigating cloud-based threats.

Now more than ever, it's imperative that organizations have complete visibility into and real-time actionable control over their cloud app usage to better monitor and understand trends and vulnerabilities. It's only with this knowledge that IT can begin to protect against threats lurking in cloud apps, such as malware."  infosecurity-magazine.com

Four key developing trends in cybercrime
These are: The evolution of exploit kits to stay one step ahead of security systems; a continued surge in SSL/TLS encryption that is giving cyber-criminals more opportunities to conceal malware from firewalls; the continued rise of Android malware; and a marked increase in the overall number of malware attacks.  infosecurity-magazine.com
 

 


 

THOROFARE, N.J. - Feb. 25, 2016 - Checkpoint Systems, Inc. (NYSE:CKP), a leading global supplier of merchandise availability solutions for the retail industry, today announced that Distribuidora Internacional de Alimentación, S.A. (DIA), a multinational discount food retail chain with stores in Europe, Asia and South America, had selected its electronic article surveillance (EAS) solutions to improve merchandise availability at its 2,600 Spain-based stores.

The fast growing retailer will be replacing all acousto-magnetic (AM) EAS pedestals with Checkpoint's radio frequency (RF) systems. In addition, its technology switch to RF has positioned it to easily adopt RFID in the future.

To protect its high-risk merchandise, DIA has also licensed Checkpoint's Alpha High Theft Solutions Keepers.

According to Per Levin, President of Merchandise Availability Solutions, Checkpoint Systems, "We are incredibly excited that one of Europe's leading and fastest growing food retailers is making the technology change and embracing Checkpoint Systems' solutions to improve its merchandise availability. We look forward to working with DIA to help it reap the benefits of RFID in the future."

About Checkpoint Systems, Inc. (www.checkpointsystems.com)
Checkpoint Systems is a global leader in merchandise availability solutions for the retail industry, encompassing loss prevention and merchandise visibility. Checkpoint provides end-to-end solutions enabling retailers to achieve accurate real-time inventory, accelerate the replenishment cycle, prevent out-of-stocks and reduce theft, thus improving merchandise availability and the shopper's experience. Checkpoint's solutions are built upon 45 years of radio frequency technology expertise, innovative high-theft and loss-prevention solutions, market-leading software, RFID hardware and comprehensive labeling capabilities to brand, secure and track merchandise from source to shelf. Checkpoint's customers benefit from increased sales and profits by implementing merchandise availability solutions to ensure the right merchandise is available at the right place and time when consumers are ready to buy. Listed on the NYSE (NYSE: CKP), Checkpoint operates in every major geographic market and employs more than 4700 people worldwide.

Twitter: @CheckpointSys
 

 

Live interviews from the NRF Big Show January 2016

LP's Digital Fast-Break Conference Kickoff

LPNN Quick Take #1


Live from New York, it's the D&D Daily! LPNN's dynamic duo, MCs Joe LaRocca (VP & Senior Advisor, Loss Prevention, RetaiLPartners) and Amber Bradley (Owner & Brand Strategist, Calibration, LLC) help kick off LP's Digital Fast-Break Conference. With 27 information-packed episodes filmed over 8 straight hours - featuring a who's who list of LP leaders, retailers, and solutions providers - "Live in NYC 2016 at the NRF Big Show" is our biggest broadcast yet.

Stay tuned to the Daily over the coming weeks, as we re-broadcast each episode in order, covering a variety of hot topics - including ORC, cybersecurity, LP's role in technology, mastering the change process, research & development, critical incident management, and so much more! While Amber and Joe (and a few surprise guests) provide plenty of fun and excitement in our "LPNN Quick Takes" along the way!

 

Solution Providers, have a video or commercial you want to publish? Contact us.




'Shopping while black': Marketplace finds some shoppers targeted by retailers because of race
Monitoring shoppers based on the colour of their skin violates human rights codes, but it does happen
It's called "shopping while black." When the colour of your skin can get you increased attention from a store's security guards. And it seems to happen every day.

Consumer racial profiling is a violation of provincial human rights codes, but some security guards admit it happens, a CBC Marketplace investigation reveals.

When an employee asked Mary McCarthy to open her backpack in a Shoppers Drug Mart in Toronto in 2011, it took her a moment to understand why. And then she knew.

I realized I was being accused of being a thief, I was being accused of stealing," says McCarthy, who is from Fredericton. I was a 55-year-old, middle-aged black woman and I didn't deserve that treatment."

In a special months-long investigation, Marketplace looked at how race and culture influence how companies treat shoppers, apartment-hunters and job-seekers across Canada.

Some shoppers followed
A 2013 report for Nova Scotia's Consumer Racial Profiling Project found major differences in how people are treated based on the colour of their skin.

Almost three-quarters of aboriginal respondents reported being followed by store staff, while 62.7 per cent of black Canadians reported being followed while shopping. Just 23.6 per cent of white respondents reported that they had experienced being followed.

Watch a special, one-hour Marketplace report, Are we racist?, this Friday on CBC Television at 8 p.m. (8:30 p.m. NT) or online.

Visit CBCNews.ca at 11:30 a.m. on Friday for an online discussion on when to intervene when you see discrimination.


CBC Marketplace tested consumer-based racial profiling in major chains across Canada, documenting how three male shoppers of different racial backgrounds - one white, one black and one aboriginal - were treated in 15 stores across five cities.

All three wore similar clothing, carried almost identical bags and followed specific instructions: they all acted in the same manner and visited the same aisles.

While most locations treated the three men the same, at other locations, they got very different levels of attention.

Mark Simms, a Jamaican-Canadian, was offered help three times and then followed around the store while shopping at a Best Buy location in Fredericton. The white shopper was offered help once and then left to browse.

A security expert who works for several large retailers -- and who asked to remain anonymous for fear of losing his job -- watched the hidden camera footage. He told Marketplace this technique is frequently used to monitor shoppers identified as suspicious in order to let them know they're being watched.

In a Shoppers Drug Mart in Regina, Rory McCusker, who is white, noticed he was watched by an employee.

McCusker says he was surprised by the attention. "It was a little weird because I've never been followed in a store before."

But when aboriginal shopper Leeland Delorme entered the same store, he was followed by multiple staff members and was tracked as he moved from aisle to aisle.

Delorme says this type of experience has happened to him before. "This is exactly what I expect from this city," he says. "I'm sorry to say I am not shocked at all. But it still pisses me off."

Shoppers Drug Mart says it takes these allegations "very seriously."

We are currently looking into the footage of the alleged incident that took place in the Regina store location and will take appropriate action, if necessary," a spokesperson wrote to Marketplace in an email.

Best Buy says it doesn't tolerate discrimination. "These allegations go against everything we expect from our employees and everything we stand for as a company," the company wrote in an email.

'It does happen'
Even though it's against the law, racial profiling by security guards does happen, one current security consultant told Marketplace.

"We'd have a different code name for certain different people, of different ethnic backgrounds," he says. "When certain ethnic backgrounds or a black minority would come in, that code name would be called out on the radio."

When Tomee Sojourner was a security guard, she remembers being told by a site supervisor to follow a group of black youths.

"What caught me off-guard was I was a black youth in my 20s. He was telling me to basically follow myself," she says.

"Most retailers won't acknowledge it, so part of getting them to even hear these recommendations is to talk about it in a language that they understand," she says.

Sojourner, who is now a Master of Law candidate at York University's Osgoode Law School, last week presented a report on consumer racial profiling to the Ontario Human Rights Commission. The organization is looking to develop a new policy on the subject. cbc.ca

Retailer's Alert: Robberies at banks, retail on rise in Toronto
Retail Robberies Up 31% First Two Months of '16

Bank robberies and store hold-ups are on the rise so far this year in Toronto. "Both bank robberies and retail robberies are up. We've been very busy in the first couple of months of the year. We saw five bank heists in a single day recently and retail robberies occur pretty much daily," says Toronto Police Staff-Insp. Mike Earl in charge of the Holdup Squad.

"We're monitoring the situation and collecting data, so it's too soon to speculate on why we're seeing this spike. But it's almost like the people committing these robberies lack the fear of apprehension."

"Our arrests are actually up in each of the last four years - the numbers are constantly rising. We've also made some significant arrests in the last two months as we work hard to try and curb these robberies."
RETAIL/BUSINESS ROBBERIES

2015: 52 by end of February
2016: 68 in first two months of year (with five days left in February)
= 31% increase torontosun.com

Shoppers Drug Mart says pharmacies are 'safest option' for medical marijuana
Canada's largest drugstore chain made the statement Wednesday after the Globe and Mail, citing unnamed sources, reported that Shoppers is looking at the possibility of selling medical marijuana. The Globe reported that Shoppers, which is owned by Loblaw , has held several meetings with medical marijuana producers and suppliers over the past year.

Editor's Note: Some ask what's the difference between Canada and the U.S. Well folks here it is. You'd never see CVS or Walgreens making this statement. Regardless of your position on the subject this approach and bold comment is at the root of the difference between the U.S. and Canada. More liberal, open, and relaxed maybe the U.S. needs to listen.  canada.com

Victoria's Secret stops its expansion in Canada due to weak dollar

Nordstrom begins hiring for its two Toronto stores - LP Jobs?

Sears Home Canada to close 8 stores assigning leases to Leon's

Lowe's Canada to open 12 new stores in '16

Simons looks to grow a Canadian retail empire

Kit and Ace lays off 35 corporate employees

 

Halifax mall shooting plot case set for May 2017 trial
The pair accused of plotting mass murder at the Halifax Shopping Centre are now scheduled to go to trial in the spring of 2017. Lindsay Souvannarath and Randall Shepherd made a brief appearance in Nova Scotia Supreme Court this morning. The pair are charged with conspiracy to commit arson, conspiracy to commit murder, uttering threats and other charges. They were arrested Feb. 13, 2015, just hours before they were to allegedly carry out an attack on a mall full of shoppers. They have been in custody ever since. cbc.ca

Toronto, CN: Photo released of suspect wanted in GTA credit card scam
Toronto police are asking for the public's help in identifying a suspect wanted in connection with a fraud investigation. On Sept. 15 and Sept. 18, a man allegedly contacted a business in the Port Union Road and Highway 401 area and ordered items over the phone. Police said the man provided the business with credit card information and picked up the purchased items that same day. It was later discovered that the credit card used was fraudulent. Officials said further investigation revealed the man has defrauded multiple people across the GTA using the same method. citynews.ca

Brandon, MB: Bloody trail of stolen guns
A pair of semi-automatic handguns stolen from a Brandon store nearly four years ago have turned up under disturbing circumstances in other communities. One was found lying next to a man in Thompson who had killed himself, while another was found in the possession of a gang member during an investigation into a shooting in Edmonton. Over a dozen weapons were stolen during a Burglary of Jo-Brook Firearms in Brandon in 2012. Justice John Menzies said it's likely 11 to 12 handguns stolen from the store are in the hands of crooks. winnipegfreepress.com

Windsor: Caught on cam: Robbery Suspect Gets Locked In
Windsor police are asking for the public's help identifying a suspect in a convenience store robbery on Albert Road. Police released video of the alleged robber, who got away after being locked inside the store by the employee. The armed robber approached the clerk and demanded cash. While the suspect was focused on the register the clerk ran out of the store and locked the door from the outside. The complainant ran to a neighbor and called the police. The clerk returned when officers arrived and found that the lock on the door was broke off and the suspect was gone. ctvnews.ca

Peoples Jewellers in the Cornwall Square, Cornwall, ON was the victim of a Grab & Run theft on 2/24 at 8:20pm, male suspect fled with a Men's Movado watch valued at $1,150
 

 

Organize, Optimize, Synchronize - American Eagle Outfitters' new distribution center integrates e-commerce and store fulfillment
American Eagle Outfitters has expanded its omnichannel operations in recent years. The specialty clothing, accessories and personal care products retailer implemented a buy-online/ship-from-store program that has exceeded expectations, and is also adding new features to its website, including 360-degree product viewing and more on-body product display.

Along with those improvements, though, comes the challenge of establishing the optimal balance in distribution centers that can replenish stores and fulfill e-commerce orders. The Pittsburgh-based retailer recently went live with a new distribution center in Hazleton, Pa., that was specifically designed to handle e-commerce and store fulfillment with maximum efficiency.

The new facility and system has produced significant efficiencies and savings for AEO. The center was constructed to environment and energy standards in what Miller calls a "very environmentally and cost-conscious design" with energy efficient features. Bringing the distribution center closer to customers has paid off; now 90 percent of direct orders are fulfilled in two to three days. A new internal system also allows the company to turn orders in 24 hours or less. nrf.com

How the Internet of Things is becoming the 'Internet of Commerce'
The maturation of mobile payment services combined with the proliferation of IoT-capable devices has created a perfect storm of innovation that's seeing our money going places it never could, both securely and conveniently. And thanks to innovators like MasterCard, the Internet of Things is moving from pure connectivity, to all-out functionality.

When MasterCard launched its Commerce for Every Device program last October, the payment innovator declared that any connected device - not just a smartphone or smartwatch - could become payments-enabled. For example, MasterCard and Coin recently banded together to offer payment support on wearable devices such as smartwatches and fitness trackers. MasterCard also partnered with Samsung's home appliance division to create the first smart refrigerator - unveiled at CES in January - that allows users to order and pay for groceries from the comfort of their own homes. Through a partnership with General Motors - which has already produced an NFC-enabled key fob, capable of touch-payments - MasterCard will be at the center of the "smart car" movement. mashable.com

U.S. Online Retail Industry Still on the Increase
The year 2016 is still relatively young and so far, internet shopping​ is showing strong signs of picking up at a faster rate. Coming from 2015, the industry totaled a whopping $341.7 billion by the end of December, which proved to be a positive sign that the niche will stay on track. As the ecommerce industry continues to boom, investors are cashing in on the niche's success. In some cases, the boom can be seen in the performance of U.S. online companies on the stock exchange. The massive boom in online shopping has made online companies' value show higher in their stock valuations. gurufocus.com

PwC: Mobile shoppers in U.S. aren't buying
According to a new study of 23,000 global consumers (including U.S. shoppers) from PwC, "Total Retail 2016," only 22% of U.S. consumers make a mobile purchase at least monthly and only 26% say mobile will become a main purchasing tool for them in the future. Deloitte cites the lack of widespread tools to make mobile purchasing easier, such as buy buttons, currently available in the U.S. chainstorage.com

Target's online sales jump 34% in Q4 on a strong holiday season

Web sales jump 26% for Lowe's in the fourth quarter

Mobile sparks Q4 sales at Home Depot - online sales up 23%

Best Buy customers flock to the web in Q4 - web sales made up 15.6% of revenue

Gap ekes out a 1% gain in 2015 web sales

Europe's food retailers take bolder moves to fight Amazon

 

 

Dallas, TX: Trucker admits stealing $100k in wedding rings
from Army - Air Force Exchange
A Dallas man has pleaded guilty to his role in a scheme to steal and pawn nearly $100,000 worth of wedding ring sets from a Dallas military exchange. Arthur Lee Hightower II was accused of scheming with his ex-wife and their two sons to steal rings from the Army and Air Force Exchange Service. Hightower, 56, worked as a truck driver whose duties included delivering merchandise to the Dallas exchange, which provides goods and services to soldiers, airmen and their families. But instead, Hightower stole about 70 rings in October 2014, according to a Department of Justice news release. Arthur Lee Hightower II admitted to one count of theft of government property. He faces a maximum penalty of 10 years in federal prison and a $250,000 fine when he's sentenced in July. dallasnews.com

Greenfield, IN: Hancock Co. Investigators probe $35,000 Credit Card Cloning Ring
Hancock County investigators are releasing new images of a potential suspect, trying to crack a credit card cloning case, as the number of victims has been increasing. Investigators said they usually get half a dozen cases of credit card theft in a month. In the past month, they've almost tripled that. Investigators aren't sure how the suspects are getting the credit card information, as none of the victims actually reported their cards lost or stolen. Police said skimmers are likely, but they have not found one location in town that connects all the victims. Investigators said they've got the man tracked across the region, from Avon to Brownsburg and in Indianapolis on the far east side, the north side, and the south side, making up to this point, $35,000 in purchases. cbs4indy.com

Bozeman, ID: Former Gibson employee accused of stealing guitars from factory; valued at $15,547
A former employee of Gibson Acoustic in Bozeman is accused of stealing multiple guitars from the factory and pawning them at a local pawn shop. Joseph Clayton Erickson, 27, was arrested Wednesday and charged with felony According to the manager, Erickson stole eight guitars between Jan. 26 and Dec. 30, 2015, and pawned them at Pawn Depot in Bozeman. The eight guitars have a retail value of $15,547. bozemandailychronicle.com

Alpharetta, GA: Shoplifting Crew escapes capture with infant in tow
Police are searching for a shoplifting crew that put a baby in danger while fleeing capture, and also used the infant as a possible "cover" during their crimes. Video shows the shoplifting thieves carrying a baby at North Point Mall and then as the individuals are approached by a loss prevention officer, the thieves sprint at full speed. Detectives believe the crew has hit at least five malls in the Metro within the past six months, to include The Mall at Stonecrest, Lenox Square, Cumberland Mall and Gwinnett Place Mall. fox5atlanta.com

West Vincent, PA: Police arrest High End Eyewear thief;
$2,300 of merchandise seized at Pawn Shop
The thief asked a technician to adjust his eyeglass frame. The technician took his eyeglasses to another room to make the adjustments. When the technician returned, she noticed that several pairs of eyeglass frames were missing from a display rack. The items have a total value of $2,300. Police said the items were sold at a pawn shop in Pottstown. dailylocal.com

Dearborn, MI: Man arrested for stealing prepaid Visa cards from Kroger
A 23-year-old man was arrested for retail fraud Feb. 16 after he stole multiple prepaid Visa cards at Kroger, 23000 Michigan Ave. Loss Prevention personnel saw the man pocket four Visa Green Dot cards and eight prepaid Visa cards. The man told police a friend was going to give him $5 for each card he stole. pressandguide.com

Woodland, WA: Police Thursday arrested Thomas Charles Larue, 43, of Vancouver on suspicion of second-degree burglary and organized retail theft

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North Attleboro, MA: Macy's Loss Prevention Agent Busted
for the Theft of $7,500 in merchandise
Authorities say Anna Oliveira worked in loss prevention at the Macy's in the Emerald Square mall and was caught concealing items in bags inside the loss prevention office, then walking out of the store. Prosecutors say she stole about $7,500 worth of clothes, jewelry, perfume and cash. thesunchronicle.com

Xenia, OH: Police investigate Harley Davison dealership break-in,
second HD dealership burglary this month
It happened at Buckminn's D&D Harley Dealership at around 2:30 a.m Police say someone pried open the door and grabbed several leather jackets, valued at $500 each. They also broke into two trucks in the back parking lot and stole DVD and CD players. Police tell us none of the motorcycles were stolen. This is the second time in two weeks that a Harley dealership has been broken into. Vandalia Police are investigating a break-in from Feb. 12 at The Buckeye Harley Davidson Dealership. More than $9,000 worth of leather merchandise was stolen during that break-in. Police aren't saying whether the two break-ins are related. wdtn.com

Indianapolis, IN: 15 year old Arrested after Robbing 7 Cell Phone stores
Police have arrested a 15-year-old for allegedly stealing from seven different cell phone stores. He was recognized when he walked into the Keystone Wireless. He faces almost 30 criminal charges including criminal confinement, pointing a firearm and armed robbery. No injuries were reported in any of the robberies. wishtv.com

Paramus, NJ: Alarm snares would-be burglars at T-Mobile, 4 arrested
Police arrested four would-be burglars last Saturday morning. The burglar alarm activated at the T-Mobile Store at about 12:56 a.m. Saturday. Police found a broken rear window and footprints leading to and from woods behind the building. Police saw a Honda Accord speed away, which backs up to the T-Mobile store. The driver and the three other occupants all were wearing black clothing, gloves and masks. Officers also saw burglary tools on the back seat. All four were arrested and charged with possession of burglary tools and attempted burglary. nj.com

St George, UT: Man identifies roommate as possible business burglar;
$5,300 in merchandise stolen
A Washington City man was arrested Monday night after his roommate allegedly recognized remote controlled items he had brought home as items that had been reported stolen Saturday during a St. George business burglary. stgeorgeutah.com

Erath Co., TX: Grand jury indicts three involved in check forgery ring;
total of 26 indicted
An Erath County grand jury has indicted 26 individuals including three women involved in a forgery ring that was busted back in September 2015. The 3 indicted this week have all been charged with engaging in organized criminal activity; third degree felonies. yourstephenvilletx.com

San Antonio, TX: Thief stashed TV's, laptops inside Walmart store
before stealing
Two people walked into a Walmart store in late December and grabbed three Sony flat screen televisions and four HP laptop computers. Surveillance video shows the pair stashing the items in the store's automotive area and then walk out the front doors. Loss prevention specialists who were watching the incident unfold on the store's surveillance system say the pair then drove to the automotive center which was closed at the time, pried the door open and then stole the TV's and laptops. news4sanantonio.com

Dozens of reported skimmers in Sarasota, FL., prompt police checking pumps today throughout city

Couple caught on camera placing skimming device in Attleboro stores strike again in Walpole

Two arrested after skimming device found on Sterling ATM in Stony Point, NY

Skimming device found in Sioux City

Baltimore, MD: Man sentenced to eight years for $10,000 credit card theft

Northborough, MA: Dick's Sporting Goods employee charged larceny; fraudulent returns

UK: Wales: Tesco Security Guard was attacked; thieves steal $50 of Cheese



Advance America - Waterford, MI - Armed Robbery
Boost Mobile - Indianapolis, IN - Armed Robbery
Boost Mobile - Shreveport, LA - Armed Robbery
Dollar General - San Antonio, TX - Armed Robbery
Family Dollar - Shreveport, LA - Burglary
Fast & Fresh - Hickory, NC - Armed Robbery
Fred's Beds - Erie, PA - Arson
Harley Davidson - Xenia, OH - Burglary
Metro PCS - Indianapolis, IN - Armed Robbery
Pet City - Ypsilanti, MI - Burglary / puppy stolen
Quik Mart - Tucson, AZ - Armed Robbery
Rite Aid - Oneonta, NY - Armed Robbery
Scotchman - Myrtle Beach, SC - Armed Robbery
St Vincent De Paul - Waterloo, IA - Burglary
Sky RC - St George, UT - Burglary
Super America - St Cloud, MN - Armed Robbery
T-Mobile - Paramus, NJ - Burglary
Walgreens - Kingsport, TN - Robbery
7-Eleven - Santa Cruz, Ca - Armed Robbery

 

 


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5 Tips for Leading Your Team Through a Crisis  When the going gets tough, nothing speaks more about your leadership than how you get your team members through a challenging time. When crisis hits, it's important that you follow these five tips to make it through safely. Take care of yourself

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Being too close to the trees to see the forest is an expression that also fits not appreciating the role you play on your own team. With the needs of the day seemingly always taking priority, it's difficult for some to step back and truly see the value you can add to your own team. Realizing it and accepting the responsibility as a team member is half the battle. But doing something with it and truly adding value is what helps the team win the game. Every group, every department is in fact a team and every member plays a vital role towards the success and the survival of that team. That's why that old expression - One for all and all for one - took such a hold in literature. Because it is that simple. The hard part is taking responsibility for it.

Just a Thought,
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Gus Downing

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