Fast-growing Schutz Shoes upgrades its fraud detectionsoftware to slash manual reviewsand improve order processing.

Online orders were flowing into shoe e-retailer Schutz Shoes,the U.S. division of Brazilian-based shoe retailer Arezzo & Co., but thesmall team spent an increasing amount of time checking whether an order wasfraudulent. When one employee on a staff of seven has to manually review thelegitimacy of an online order, that’s time away from customers and otherbusiness, says Kimberly Gort, e-commerce manager for Schutz.

Schutz Shoes started selling online in 2014 operating itse-commerce site in the basement of its New York City store. That first year,Schutz had about $350,000 in online sales. In 2015, about half of its productcatalog was available online and sales grew to $1.5 million. Now, with all ofits products available online, Schutz Shoes projects about $3 million in onlinesales for 2016, Gort says. The retailer also opened a store in Los Angeles.

With triple-digit percentage growth comes growing pains. Whenthe e-retailer received a modest five online orders a day, using the free toolfrom its e-commerce platform provider (Shopify Inc.) worked fine, Gort says.The plugin would flag orders that might be fraudulent, and the retailer decidedto approve or decline such orders.  Forexample, the tool flagged an order if the credit card and shipping addressesdidn’t match, so a Schutz employee had to call the customer and determine if itwas a legitimate order. Deciding what was and wasn’t fraudulent often wasdifficult, Gort says.

“There’s always a risk,” she says. “It was like we wereplaying roulette.”

The situation frustrated the retailer and the shopper, assome shoppers were blocked from placing an order or their order was delayed orthey had to deal with a phone call from the retailer. Schutz was missing out onorders, devoting almost a full employee to manually check the orders and seekout consumers to verify information. As order volume and sales grew, themanual-review model no longer worked, Gort says.

In July, Schutz Shoes decided to integrate fraud detectionsoftware provider ClearSale onto its platform, choosing the vendor because itwas used by parent company Arezzo. It took about two weeks to integrate thetechnology onto Schutz’s site, Gort says.

ClearSale factors in about 100 variables to approve or denyorders, and then has its 500-person team to dig deeper on flagged orders, saysRafael Lourenco, vice president of operations at ClearSale. Orders can beapproved within three seconds, while an order that requires manual review willtake 24-48 hours, he says.

The impact of adding ClearSale was almost immediate, Gortsays, as Schutz Shoes was no longer on the hook to manually check flaggedorders. The e-retailer now approves 94-96% of its orders, which is about a 5%increase from when it relied on its free plugin, Gort says.

ClearSale charges per transaction and takes a 0.4-1.5% cut ofthe sale. The commission is worth it, Gort says, as more sales are approved. InAugust, Schutz Shoes paid ClearSale $1,500. The retailer processed 1,200 onlineorders that month, 1,002 of which ClearSale reviewed in some capacity; of those1,002 orders, 973 (97.1%) were approved.

ClearSale has about 2,000 clients, and more than 90% areretailers, Lourenco says. Across all of its clients, 93.5% of orders areautomatically approved, Lourenco says.

Recently, ClearSale updated its formula with another variableto approve or deny orders. The feature factors in how long a consumer is on thewebsite before she purchases. The shorter it is, the more suspect. However,this is only one variable and a short time between landings on the site andpurchasing will not automatically flag an order, Lourenco says. The new featureincreased ClearSale’s average approval rate by 1%, he says.

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Japan is firmly implanted asone of the foremost global authorities in the medical technology market and ishome for local offices of some of the most innovative leaders in the business.Our medicaldevice team was created with the singular goal of serving thisemerging field, and with this exclusive focus, we offer a specialization andunderstanding of our clients' needs that no other company in the industry canmatch.

Pacific Associates Limited isuniquely positioned with a history, experience and passion for thisever-changing and dynamic market with a practice that serves candidates andclients across all medical and life science segments. We are dedicated tohelping our partners excel in the global medical technology market byconnecting the best people with the best companies as they work to change theworld around us.

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Today, you can see enterprise IT departments having a hard timedeciding whether or not to move to cloud. Many of which depend on traditionalapplications for their daily operations. Indeed, traditional apps are old butthey usually serve business-critical functions. Pro Axia Consultants knows thata lot of people working in IT have encountered apps such as a five-year-oldJava application or an owned .NET application that uses SQL servers.

Hundreds of articles available online had described the benefits ofcloud-aware-apps, but this article aims to discuss some cloud benefits thatwere not usually mentioned in most of those articles.

Let's begin with cloud having the ability to adopt slowly.Companies being unsure where to start makes them put off cloud adoption. Cloud is notall about race; it should be considered by businesses as a process. In orderfor some enterprises to determine which parts of their application performbetter and simpler to handle in cloud, they take their traditional, huge appand tease it apart to separate the pieces of the application.

Cloud is affordable, meaning you'll get more for less. Companiesattempting to make their app work in the cloud will develop a version of itthen call it a test and break it apart. Companies can spin up cloud servers andget rid of them, making it low-risk and high-rewarding. Its cost is only asmall percentage of what companies are used to pay for traditionalinfrastructure.

Instead of hiring a full-time hardware specialist, cloud providerscan handle much of the work involved in keeping the infrastructure running.Good news is that it is more affordable than hiring those full-timeprofessionals. Delivering real value to the business includes new projects fromthe IT staff and cloud can help them fully concentrate on that matter.

Cloud is obviously one of the reasons why the nature of IT isbeing dramatically transformed. Cloud adoption allows your team to implementnew agile development practices if your business involves software. With cloud,you can be sure that your business will stand strong amidst of the competition.The team at Pro Axia Consultants understands that the primary element vital tothe survival of many businesses today is the ability to speed up thedevelopment lifecycle and reduce time to market.

Pro Axia Consultants also claims that every piece of a traditionalapp shouldn't be altered into a fully cloud-native app all at the same time toensure that your business will not be left behind in the new generation ofcloud IT. It is essential to find out first which components of your apps canlive, and even succeed, in the cloud.



For selecting a new system

1. An actively engaged project sponsor

A board level director /executive who fully support, is actively involved with and championsthe project. Ideally this would be the CEO. IT Director Support is required,but this is not enough. It should at least be the head of the relevantdepartment eg Finance Director / CFO for a new accounting system, HR Directorfor a new HR system. Selecting a new system without a Project Sponsor will notonly fail, but most likely not even start.

2. Clear objectives for the system selection

These include defining avision for the new system, the objectives to be achieved, the scope of theproject and hence, the parameters, tasks, project plan for the selectionprocess.

3. A solid businesscase for the project

These days, almost all systemprojects require a good business case prior to commencement or systemselection. Whilst at a high or summarized level, the essential componentsinclude:

·        an outline of the project, what is beingproposed and why

·        a positive ROI (Return on Investment) and aquick investment payback

·        a summary of costs (direct and indirect),benefits (tangible and intangible) and an outline budget for the overallproject

·        an overview of how the new system will beimplemented, key dates, departments, people involved, resourcing, outlineimplementation project plan, project risks and their mitigation

·        a budget available for the system selection egfor external purchases, consultancy and internal resources

4. Users driving the project

Driving the project forward ismore than just user involvement – the users need to actively lead and betotally involved with the system selection. They should be willing to acceptthe need for change, not just to the system, but also to operational procedures/ processes. And whilst IT is also heavily involved, it should be in more of asupporting role, rather than the driving role. After all, the system is for theusers - who are responsible for the business need / business case.

5. Committed resources and experienced project management

An experienced project managershould manage the system selection process. All resources should have theskills, commitment and time available to carry out the selection tasks. Thereshould be no conflict with their existing workloads, critical business dates /deadlines, etc. If there are insufficient internal resources with the rightskills and availability, bring in external resources. They could either work onthe selection process, or free up staff, who in turn, may work on the systemselection.

6. Focus on the business requirements

The establishment of businessrequirements under pins the project. It is the ‘foundation block’ for selectingthe right system, implementing and achieving the desired business benefits.

7. A sensible time scale for the system selection process

Too rushed and corners will becut, not enough thought given to business requirements and potentially goodsolutions missed. But too long and the selection process becomes too drawn out,confusing and difficult to make head way. A balance has to be struck - whichvaries from one organization to another – so that there is sufficient time forall the software selection activities to be completed.



TOKYO -- For the second time in about a decade, Mitsubishi Motors Corp. faces a scandal that could affect the company'sexistence.

The Japanese automaker has improperly tested the fueleconomy of its cars for the past quarter century, widening the scope ofmisconduct that executives initially said dated back to 2002.

TheMitsubishi board has formeda panel of three ex-prosecutors to investigate for about three months. Untilthen, customers, investors and minicar partner Nissan Motor Co. may be leftwaiting for information about the number of affected models and details ofcompensation.

"I'm taking this as a case that could affect ourcompany's existence," President Tetsuro Aikawa told reporters during apress conference Tuesday. "My mission is to solve the issue."

On Tuesday, Mitsubishi shares plunged for a fifth day,slashing the company's market value by half during that span to about 427billion yen ($3.8 billion).

The deepening crisis is the worst since the automakercovered up defective axles that led wheels to detach in fatal accidents,prompting multiple bailouts from Mitsubishi Group companies.

"Right now, understanding which cars and how many ofthem are at stake is the most important thing," Koji Endo, a Tokyo-basedanalyst with Advanced Research Japan, said. After two press conferences in thespan of a week, investors are "still waiting for a proper report."

Mitsubishi hasn't decided how it will compensatecustomers, Aikawa said. The company is in discussions about reimbursing Nissan,which was supplied about three-quarters of the 625,000 minicars that wereimproperly tested and relied on manipulated data. Nissan has since voluntarilystopped sales of the Japan-only models, called Dayz and Dayz Roox.

Depending on how many more vehicles were improperlytested, the company "will get into a situation where its survival isdifficult," Endo said.

Widening probes

Wrongdoing by the Japanese automaker and Volkswagen Grouphas prompted a reckoning of the ways carmakers test for and label the fueleconomy and exhaust emissions of their vehicles. Government investigators lastweek raided French manufacturer PSA Group as part of broader checks intovehicle emissions, while Daimler initiated an internal probe into itscertification process at the behest of the U.S. Department of Justice.

The EPA and the California Air Resources Board alsoannounced an investigation of whether models sold in the U.S. meet fuel economyregulations.

The EPA has instructed Mitsubishi to provide additionalinformation on vehicles sold in the U.S. and will direct the company to conductadditional testing, EPA spokeswoman Julia Valentine said in an emailedstatement Tuesday in Washington.

Japan's transport ministry asked Mitsubishi to re-submitfindings from its investigation of improper testing methods by May 11. Aninitial report that the company provided the regulator ahead of a Wednesdaydeadline was insufficient, a ministry official said Tuesday.

In addition to potential payouts to customers and Nissan,Mitsubishi may have to pay back government tax rebates that its minicarsshouldn't have been eligible for, Ryugo Nakao, an executive vice president, hassaid.

Nissan decision

Nissan first uncovered fuel economy discrepancies whenworking on development for the next generation of the minicars. CEO CarlosGhosn said Monday that Nissan will decide on the future of the partnershipafter further verification.

Mitsubishi had set stretch fuel economy goals for itsengineers to achieve. Aikawa, 62, and other executives attended meetings wherethe company raised targets for the Nissan Dayz, Dayz Roox and Mitsubishi eKWagon and eK Space minicars, Nakao said Tuesday.

"We aren't able to deal with customers," Aikawatold reporters Tuesday, adding that he wasn't aware of the improper testing."We're just telling them that we'll offer something."



Malware affects us all

The increasing number of Internet users worldwide createsan equal (or larger) number of opportunities for cyber criminals to takeadvantage of our systems. As we become more dependent on the onlineenvironment, we can clearly see a massive growth in malware and cyber criminalactivities all across the globe.

With so many ways out there to access and exploit vulnerablesystems, we need to make sure we’re able to recognize a malware infection inorder to prevent and defend our systems.

Because it is a battleand you need to be ready.

This article will show you what the main symptoms of a malware infectedsystem are. You’ll also learn to correctly evaluate the risk and know whereto look for a solution. Let’s get to it!

Symptoms of a malwareinfection


Does it take longerthan normal for your operating system to boot up?

Are you waiting toolong for some of your programs to start?

It is a known fact that malware has the tendency to slow downyour operating system, your Internet speed or the speed of your applications.


One of the most annoying signs of malware is represented bythe unwantedpop-up windows. Unexpected pop-ups which appear on the system are a typicalsign of a spyware infection.


If your programs or your system crash constantly or theinfamous BSOD (Blue Screen of Death) appears regularly, it’s a clear warningthat your system is not working properly and you should look into it.


Another warning sign of a potential malware infection on yoursystem is the hard drive activity.


Regarding the hard drive, you also need to check if yourphysical storage space has been increasing lately or if some of your filesdisappeared or changed their names.


There are cases where the user is not connected to theInternet through his browser, and there is no program that may connect toonline servers to download or upload any data, but high network activity can still be observed.


Have you noticed thatyour home page has been changed and you don’t remember doing it yourself?

Did a new toolbar popout of nowhere and landed at top of your web browser?

Have you tried toaccess your favorite blog, but you were redirected to a different address?

This usually happens when you visit a website and youaccidentally click a link or a pop-up window. This triggers unwanted softwareto download and install on your device. Its effects are not only annoying, butalso malicious.


A few warning signs should really make you suspicious. If anyof these happen, pay closer attention and try finding the cause.


If your antivirus solution doesn’t seem to work anymore or ifthe Update module seems to be disabled, then check to see what happenedimmediately!


Are your friendstelling you that they received suspicious emails from you or instant messagesfrom your social media account, which often include attachments or links?

First of all, you need to verify whether those emails ormessages were sent from one of your accounts (so check your Sent Items folderin your email/social media account). If there’s nothing there, those messagescould have been delivered from an application which is out of your control.

Knowledge is our bestweapon

Knowing how malicious software behaves on a regular systemmay just prove to be the key element between staying safe and having yoursystem wrecked or your online identity stolen.

Since we live in a connected and complex environment, onlinesecurity doesn’t end with installing a series of security programs andforgetting about them. It’s essential that we also understand how malwarebehaves on the system, so we can mitigate its impact.

In the end, it is our knowledge of malware tools and methodsthat keeps us safe, because it is far easier to prevent a threat from becomingreality than to take actions against it when it’s already too late.