TIME Retail

Staples Investigates Reports of Possible Credit Card Data Breach

Staples To Close 225 Stores
A Staples store is seen on March 6, 2014 in Miami, Florida. Joe Raedle—Getty Images

Potentially the latest in a string of high-profile data thefts

The world’s biggest office-supply retailer is investigating reports of a possible data breach of Staples customers’ credit cards after banks detected a pattern of unusual charges concentrating on a group of shoppers.

Staples acknowledged on Tuesday that it had launched an investigation and requested assistance from law enforcement officials, Bloomberg reports.

Reports of fraudulent charges recently surfaced on an independent security blog, which noted that the bulk of the card data appeared to come from a group of stores clustered in the northeast, including seven in Pennsylvania, three in New York and one in New Jersey.

The security concerns come amid a wave of breaches in the past two years against retailers like Home Depot, Kmart and Target. The latter said in August that its breach was expected to cost some $148 million.

[Bloomberg]

TIME Money

European Commission Fines Banking Cartel $120 Million

US-FINANCE-JP MORGAN-MADOFF-PENALTIES
The headquarters of JP Morgan Chase on Park Avenue December 12, 2013 in New York. STAN HONDA—AFP/Getty Images

JPMorgan will pay the lion's share, followed by UBS and Credit Suisse

The European Commission levied a $120 million fine against JPMorgan, UBS and Credit Suisse on Tuesday, for manipulating key interest rates through an illicit cartel.

JPMorgan incurred the largest fine, $79 million (62 million euro), for fixing the Swiss franc Libor interest rate, Reuters reports. The bank will pay an additional $13 million (10.5 million euro) for participating in a cartel with UBS and Credit Suisse to rig interest rates on derivatives.

UBS and Credit Suisse will pay $16 million and $12 million fines, respectively, though Royal Bank of Scotland escaped sanctions for alerting European regulators to the price fixing scheme.

[Reuters]

TIME Autos

Death Toll Linked to GM Ignition Switch Defect Rises to 29

GM Hearing
Family members of people killed due to a faulty ignition switch watch a House hearing on April 1, 2014. Tom Williams—CQ-Roll Call / Getty Images

Two new death claims approved by compensation program

The number of deaths linked to a faulty ignition switch in General Motors vehicles rose to 29 on Monday, according to a new report, after two new death claims were approved by the program that will compensate victims and their families.

The fund has received more than 1,500 claims since its establishment on Aug. 1, including 184 submissions for death claims, Reuters reports. All 29 deaths, and another 27 injuries, have been determined to be eligible for compensation so far, finds the report released by the office of Kenneth Feinberg, who is heading the compensation effort.

GM launched the fund amid withering criticism for its failure to address the defect after several employees within the company noted the problem at least 11 years before any action was taken to resolve it.

[Reuters]

TIME deals

Spotify Finally Introduces a Family Plan

SWEDEN-MUSIC-COMPANY-SPOTIFY
TO GO WITH AFP STORY BY SOREN BILLING: A woman uses streaming service Spotify on March 7, 2013 in Stockholm, Sweden. JONATHAN NACKSTRAND—AFP/Getty Images

Up to four family members can subscribe at a 50% discount

Spotify announced plans Monday for a steeply discounted subscription option that enables up to five family members to subscribe to the digital streaming music service under one billing account.

The new offer, Spotify Family, enables up to four family members to join an existing subscriber’s ad-free Premium account, which costs $9.99 per month, at half the price. That discount would slash a family of five’s monthly bill from roughly $50 a month to $30 a month.

“This is one of the most asked for features from our audience,” Chief Content Officer Ken Parks said in an online statement.

Spotify Family will roll out worldwide over the next few weeks, the company said. The move follows a similar half-off discount that Spotify launched for college students in March as the company aggressively works to broaden its subscriber base.

TIME Fast Food

McDonald’s Says Russian Health Inspectors Target 200 Restaurants

Inside Burger King And Subway As McDonald's Faces Growing Challenge From Rivals
A logo hangs on display outside a McDonald's food restaurant in Moscow, Russia, on Sunday, April 7, 2013. Andrey Rudakov—Bloomberg / Getty Images

Russian courts also ordered 9 to close

More than 200 McDonald’s restaurants in Russia are being audited by health inspectors, the company said in a public statement over the weekend.

McDonald’s vowed to challenge a court-ordered closure of nine restaurants, according to a Russian-language statement released by the Illinois-based company, Bloomberg reports.

Health inspections of the Russian branches — there were at least 440 as of August — began shortly after countries in the West imposed sanctions against Russia during the conflict in eastern Ukraine.

Regulators argue the searches are part of a widening investigation of sanitary violations, but critics in August dismissed the probes as an exercise in political retaliation.

[Bloomberg]

TIME viral

San Francisco Radio Station Bans Lorde’s ‘Royals’ for World Series

Lorde
Lorde performs onstage during day 2 of the 2014 Coachella Valley Music & Arts Festival at the Empire Polo Club on April 12, 2014 in Indio, Calif. Kevin Winter—Getty Images

'No offense, Lorde," tweeted KFOG Radio

A San Francisco radio station has vowed not to air Lorde’s breakout single “Royals” until the end of the 2014 World Series matchup between the Kansas City Royals and San Francisco Giants.

KFOG Radio tweeted out its ban on Friday after listeners objected to the station playing a song that could be interpreted as an endorsement for the rival team.

The connection between the song and the team is, in fact, not so far off base. Lorde has said in a previous interview that the lyrics for ‘Royals’ came to her in a moment of inspiration after she was struck by an image of a baseball player wearing the Royals jersey in National Geographic, Yahoo News reports.

TIME career

Microsoft CEO Says He Was ‘Completely Wrong’ to Suggest Women Shouldn’t Ask for Raises

Satya Nadella had previously apologized for his remarks

Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella said in a new interview that he was “completely wrong” to suggest it’s “good karma” for women to wait for a raise instead of asking for one.

“It’s been a very humbling and learning experience for me,” Nadella told CNBC in his first interview since his initial comments drew outrage.

Nadella said anyone held back in their career by gender bias should push back against their managers, and that he had wrongly extrapolated the advice from his own experiences.

“I basically took my own approach to how I’ve approached my career and sprung it on half of humanity,” he said.

Nadella had previously apologized for his remarks in a letter to the company.

“I believe men and women should get equal pay for equal work,” he wrote. “If you think you deserve a raise, you should just ask.”

See the interview below.

[CNBC]

 

 

TIME Football

Football Players Recall Abusive Hazing at New Jersey High School

Football Team Investigation
Residents of Sayreville gather for an anti-bullying rally Oct. 12, 2014, in Sayreville, N.J. Mel Evans—AP

One said the backlash from reporting the incident “made me want to shoot myself”

Older players on a New Jersey high school football team that has drawn national headlines for a hazing scandal allegedly pinned younger players to the floor and punched, kicked and sexually groped their bodies, according to a new report.

The New York Times, citing interviews with victims and multiple witnesses, provides new detail to the scandal that has cost Sayreville War Memorial High School its football season and has led seven varsity football players to be arrested. One victim said he was penetrated from behind by a finger. But there are conflicting accounts and some said they didn’t consider the hazing abusive.

The victims told the Times that they continued to suffer from abuse and taunts on social media for reporting the attacks, and one said the backlash “made me want to shoot myself.”

The team’s season was cancelled this month.

Read more at the Times

 

TIME North Korea

A Former Doctor to North Korea’s Founder Thinks He Passed on Health Problems to Kim Jong Un

Kim Il Sung
North Korea's founder Kim Il Sung in Pyongyang, Oct. 10, 1980. AP

Kim Il Sung had an obsessive drive to live to the age of 100

A former physician to North Korea’s f0unding leader Kim Il Sung speculated in a new interview that the ailments which afflicted the elder Kim may explain the recent public absence of his grandson and the country’s current leader, Kim Jong Un.

Kim So-Yeon, a phyisician who defected to South Korea in 1992, told CNN that Kim Il Sung suffered from a range of maladies, including stress, obesity, diabetes and heart problems, as well as an obsessive drive to live to the age of 100. She observed the same symptoms in his son, Kim Jong Il.

Examining photographs of the youngest Kim to make claims that can’t be verified in the opaque country, the physician speculated that Kim Jong Un recent reappearance in public, limping with a cane after a prolonged absence for unspecified medical treatments, appeared to match the symptoms of his father and grandfather.

[CNN]

Read next: Sorry, North Korea Conspiracists: Kim Jong Un Is Probably Just Sick

TIME Gadgets

Apple’s First Retina iMac Will Go On Sale for $2,499

The new Retina 5K display packs 14.7 million pixels

Apple unveiled a new iMac with a 27-inch Retina 5K display Thursday, packs a record-breaking 14.7 million pixels — or roughly seven times as many pixels as a typical modern HDTV.

The display measures 5mm thick and will include a number of performance enhancements, including higher contrast ratios, displaying blacker blacks and brighter whites, and a 30% reduction in energy consumption by the LED backlight. The display runs on a new timing controlling chip, built in-house by Apple, to direct the movement of millions of pixels across the screen.

Apple’s iMac with Retina Display will sell for $2,499.

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