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Cybercrime Costs How Much?

6 Jul

The extent of cybercrime continues to explode, as we have noted before (see, for example, 1, 2, 3).

Consider the following:

  • Interpol describes the types of cybercrime that exist — “Cybercrime is a fast-growing area of crime. More and more criminals are exploiting the speed, convenience, and anonymity of the Internet to commit a diverse range of criminal activities that know no borders, either physical or virtual, cause serious harm, and pose very real threats to victims worldwide. Although there is no single universal definition of cybercrime, law enforcement generally makes a distinction between two main types of Internet-related crime: advanced cybercrime (or high-tech crime) – sophisticated attacks against computer hardware and software; and cyber-enabled crime – many ‘traditional’ crimes have taken a new turn with the advent of the Internet, such as crimes against children, financial crimes, and even terrorism.
  • David Sun reports that “Just last year [2016], cybercrime cost the global economy over $450 billion U.S., and this number is only expected to grow, with estimates that it will hit $3 trillion U.S. by 2020.” Also, click here for more from Sun.
  •  Verizon has published a 100-page PDF report (“Data Breach Digest”). Click here to access the full report.
  • Europol has published a 57-page PDF report (subtitled “Crime in the Age of Technology”).  Click here to access the full report.
  • Symantec has published a 77-page PDF report (“Internet Security Threat Report “).  Click here to access the full report.



Happy Fourth of July!!

4 Jul

In honor of the U.S. July 4 holiday, we offer a video clip and three informative and entertaining infographics. Have a great day — and please be safe. 🙂

Video: History of Independence Day from History Channel


Infographic: How Americans Celebrate July 4th  from Fronetics


July 4th by the Numbers [1] from History Channel and Column Five 


July 4th by the Numbers [2] from WalletHub


A Customer Experience Infographic

30 Jun

As we have discussed before, there are many factors that affect whether a shopper receives a good customer experience — and whether a shopper completes a purchase or becomes loyal to the company.

Take a look at the wide-ranging data in this infographic — some rather surprising — by Client Heartbeat.


True Fit’s “Shop for Others” App

29 Jun

We spend a lot of time (and money 🙂 ) shopping for others. Sometimes we enter the right information and sometimes we don’t. That’s why the gift receipt was invented for refunds. LOL.

Now, True Fit has devised a new app (“Shop for Others”) to make it easier to buy the right gift:

“Birthdays, Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, back to school, the holidays; it seems like it’s always the season to shop for someone. For those of us who go out on a limb and buy footwear and apparel for friends and family, your online shopping experience just got a lot better. For those of you who opt for giving the gift card rather than an outfit because you’re not confident about the fit of clothes or shoes for others, you’re in luck. We’re happy to announce that purchasing apparel and footwear for friends and family just got a whole lot easier with True Fit’s newest feature, ‘Shop For Others.’”

Here’s how Shop for Others works:

Create and Save a Profile for a Family Member or Friend — Retailers who support this capability have the profile icon with a red ‘Plus Sign’ next to the standard True Fit recommendation. Shoppers are then prompted to fill in a few short questions about the person he or she is shopping for, which may include gender, height, weight, and a well-fitting or favorite piece of clothing in their closet, and it’s corresponding size and brand.  To complete the profile for improved fit accuracy, you can even fill in optional details, like stomach (Is it flat, average or round?), shoulders (are they narrow, average, or broad?), and torso (is it short, average or long?).”


Click the image to read more.


Tricking Kids into Eating Healthy Veggies

26 Jun

Most parents want their children to eat healthy. But they also know how difficult this can be with resistant kids. So how do we get children to eat healthier?

Here’s one clever way as reported by Alexandra Jardine for Creativity:

“Parents are always trying to find new ways of sneaking vegetables into other food — from zucchini muffins to chopped up carrots in spaghetti sauce. Dutch supermarket chain Plus has come up with its own way — a bottled sauce made with pure beetroot, carrot, and parsnip.”

“JWT Amsterdam co-developed the Super Saus design with Plus, creating a sauce that is both designed appeals to children’s tastes and which offers a kid-friendly design, in which the ingredients are ‘disguised’ as superheroes on the packaging. Priced at 2 euros per bottle, the product is on sale across the more than 250 Plus stores in the Netherlands.”


Here is a video synopsis. Do YOU think it ethical for parents to “trick” their kids into eating vegetables (healthy food)?


Will Companies Be Ready for Europe’s General Data Protection Rule?

22 Jun

In the United States, consumer privacy rules are not as strong as they are in other areas of the world. Recently, the U.S. Congress voted to overturn a pending regulation that would require Internet service providers (ISPs) to obtain people’s permission before selling their data about them. President Trump then signed the rollback.

As reported by

“The reversal is a victory for ISPs, which have argued that the regulation would put them at a disadvantage compared with so-called edge providers, like Google and Facebook. Those firms are regulated by the Federal Trade Commission and face less stringent requirements. ISPs collect huge amounts of data on the Web sites people visit, including medical, financial, and other personal information. The FCC regulation would have required ISPs to ask permission before selling that information to advertisers and others, a so-called opt-in provision.”

In contrast to the U.S. approach to privacy, Europe has a sweeping new regulation that will take effect in May 2018. It will have an impact on companies based anywhere, including the United States.

Brian Wallace, reporting for CMS Wire, describes the General Data Protection Rule (GDPR), thusly. Be sure to read the material highlighted:

“The European Parliament passed the General Data Protection Rule (GDPR) in April 2016. The law is one of the most sweeping privacy laws protecting citizens ever to be put on the books, and is scheduled to take effect on May 25, 2018. One of the most misunderstood things about this law is that it covers EU citizen data, no matter which country the company using it is located. This means that any company in the world that stores EU citizen protected data has less than a year to come into compliance with the GDPR.

According to the GDPR’s Web site, “The EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) replaces the Data Protection Directive 95/46/EC and was designed to harmonize data privacy laws across Europe, to protect and empower all EU citizens data privacy, and to reshape the way organizations across the region approach data privacy. The GDPR protects personal data and sensitive personal data. This includes: sensitive data: name, location, identification numbers, IP address, cookies, RFID info; and sensitive personal data: health data, genetic data, biometric data, racial or ethnic data, political opinions, and sexual orientation.


Take a look at the following infographic from Digital Guardian to learn more! Click the image for a larger version.


Better Understanding Returns of Online Purchases

13 Jun

Online retailers need to better deal with two key aspects of the customer purchase process: abandoning the shopping cart just before checking out and handling the returns of online purchases. This post focuses on the second factor — returns.

Navar surveyed almost 700 U.S. consumers who returned at least one online purchase over the preceding 12 months to understand people’s attitudes towards returns when shopping online. As summarized in a press release about the study:

“‘An online return is a critical moment in the customer journey. Retailers have an opportunity to impress and delight customers, especially high-value segments like millennials and affluent shoppers. They treat returns as a natural part of the buying process and have come to expect convenience and transparent communication,’ says Amit Sharma, CEO of Narvar. ‘If retailers can meet these high expectations, they can use returns to improve customer satisfaction, inspire loyalty and fuel new revenue streams.'”

“U.S. millennials make 54 percent of their purchases online. As they buy more online, they return more too. Yet, retailers are not meeting expectations, with 48 percent of millennials saying returns are a hassle. As many as 60 percent of millennials admit to keeping purchases they dislike because they don’t want to deal with the hassle of returning them, which is 18 percent higher than shoppers over the age of 30. High-income shoppers have similar perceptions and behaviors as millennials when it comes to returns. They are also 1.5 times more likely than the average consumer to return an online purchase. This signals a new opportunity for retailers to differentiate themselves by addressing consumers’ desire for convenience, communication and flexibility in the post-purchase experience.”


Click the image to read more of the highlights from the Narvar study.


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