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Breaking News in the Industry: May 20, 2016

New Supply Chain Intelligence Report: Volume Up – Value Down

In the first quarter of 2016, the FreightWatch International Supply Chain Intelligence Center (FWI SCIC) recorded a total of 221 cargo thefts in the United States. During this time, 66 of these incidents occurred in January; 90 occurred in February, and 65 occurred in March. The average loss value per incident during this time was $112,467. Through a comparison with the previous quarter (Q4-2015), this represents a 13% increase in volume and a 13% decrease in value. When comparing these figures to the same quarter last year (Q1-2015), this represents an 8% increase in volume and a 56% decrease in value. Click here for a complete copy of the report. []

UK Research Says Retailers Lead Number of Cyber Attack Incident Responses

Retail now accounts for 22 percent of all response engagements, up from 12 percent the previous year, according to the annual Global Threat Intelligence Report. The rise has been put down to shops processing increasingly large volumes of personal information such as credit card details. The financial services sector has previously been identified as ideally suited for cyber criminals. Companies have generally found to be increasingly reporting data breaches. Investigations are up to 28 percent of all attacks compared to 16 percent the previous year, with many incidents focused on theft of data and intellectual property. []

Shoplifting Suspect Slashes His Own Throat

What started as an investigation into an alleged shoplifting suspect, turned into a medical emergency. Manchester, CT, police say a 44-year-old man slashed his throat with a knife while he was being questioned by Walmart security on Wednesday afternoon. Police were called to the Buckland Hills Walmart around 1:30 p.m. for a report that a possible shoplifting suspect had sustained serious self-inflicted wounds while being questioned by store security.

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Police say suspect allegedly switched the price tag on a vacuum cleaner and tried to buy it at the lower price. Store security approached the man and brought him into their security office to get his information. Police say while security was speaking with the suspect, he pulled a knife out of his pocket and slashed his neck. He sustained a significant, and potentially life-threatening injury and was taken to Hartford Hospital. []

Food Retail Industry Responds to DOL’s Final Overtime Rule

Food Marketing Institute (FMI) shares the following statement on the release of the Administration’s final overtime rule, which will have significant operational consequences for how food retailers structure their businesses and pay their associates. Jennifer Hatcher, FMI chief public policy officer, senior vice president of government relations, stated, “As the association for the nation’s grocery stores, we agree that an increase to the salary threshold was warranted, and we appreciate the Department of Labor for not imposing changes to the ‘duties test,’ which would have been devastating. However, we still have significant concerns with a number of changes included in the final rule that will have serious scheduling and financial impact that could drive up costs and product availability. “While we appreciate DOL extending the implementation beyond the 60 days in the proposed rule which was unworkable, many of our members will still have significant scheduling and budgeting challenges implementing a rule that doubles the salary level in less than 7 months, on December 1 – during the busiest shopping season of the year. []

Four Accused of Counterfeiting 100+ Credit Cards

Ulta Beauty loss prevention manager tipped off police to four people who now face criminal charges after being found with more than a hundred counterfeit credit cards and thousands of dollars in apparently ill-gotten merchandise. Each facing charges of unlawful use of a financial transaction device, conducting a criminal enterprise, conspiracy and identity theft.

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According to court documents, authorities say the four suspects had been to three Ulta stores in Kent County and used multiple credit cards to buy gift cards and merchandise. At one of the stores, when a credit card was denied, one of the suspects simply pulled out another to pay. The Ulta loss prevention manager thought credit card fraud may be involved, so he tried to get the license plate number on the suspects’ car. He couldn’t, but he remembered what it and the suspects looked like and happened to spot it later as he was driving. He followed it to an area Olive Garden, at which point he called police. Investigators say that when they searched the suspects’ vehicle and the Motel 6 where they were staying, they found more than 100 counterfeit or cloned credit cards bearing various names. Police say they also found thousands of dollars in merchandise from various stores, some of which looked like it had been prepared for shipping. Receipts recovered indicated more items had already been shipped to Miami. The suspects were booked in to the Kent County Correctional Facility and are each being held there on $1 million bond. []

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