The Macy’ data breach story that broke earlier this week was most certainly a reminder that hackers can get around even the most sophisticated firewalls. The attackers in the Macy’s case were able to access detailed personal information, including the customer’s full names and addresses, phone numbers, email addresses, and payment card security codes.

The retail giant did state that they felt there was no reason to believe that the incident could be used by cybercriminals to open new accounts in the affected customer’s names.

However, there are always potential aftershocks when it comes to compromised consumer data in retail cyber attacks.

Consumers who think they may have been victimized need to be aware that they could potentially be targeted with phishing emails designed to make them hand over further sensitive information. It’s important to keep a close eye on email inboxes. Any emails that contain any kind of financial data and links that the recipient is encouraged to follow, with requests for any kind of personal information should be deleted immediately.

Consumers also should file a report with the Federal Trade Commission by calling the FTC Identity Theft Hotline, and they should contact one of the three major credit bureaus to place a fraud alert on their credit records.

IFA executive director Jens Heithecker has overseen enough IFA events to know a positive trend when he sees one. Regarding the 59th edition of the annual consumer electronics extravaganza, held back in September in Berlin, Germany, he saw a new kind of synergy emerging.

Heithecker stated that, “Innovation speaks for itself. It is coming in from all different industries and is combining to create new and different concepts.”

He added that, “IFA is a very positive environment for the industry and is the best platform to communicate about new products and ideas.”

Heithecker has always been quick to point out that IFA has two main objectives— to showcase what’s best in the industry and bring the best minds together for co-innovation. The latter of those two objectives has become the dominant theme at an event that is seeing a major increase in the diversity of industries that are attending every year.

This trend in the make up of the event’s exhibitors, attendees and programs, speaks directly to Heithecker’s thoughts that collaboration is at the heart of what is driving today’s innovation.

IFA Berlin 2020, runs from September 4-9 in Berlin, Germany.

The tide continues to turn for women in business today and the Tech Up For Women conference at the Jacob Javits Center in New York this past  Tuesday shone a bright spotlight, on both the struggle it’s been to get here as well as the progress that continues to be made.

The one-day conference covered many different areas in a fast moving program, including cyber security, AI, VR, and the digital transformation. The annual event provides resources and opportunities for women to improve their digital literacy and successfully compete and continue to disrupt gender imbalance in work environments.

Among the more intriguing discussions was one featuring Stephanie Smeriglio Latham, Head of Industry, Technology and Global Marketing Solutions at Facebook and Michelle Crossan-Matos - Samsung’s CMO, Corporate Strategy. The two women tackled the subject of gender diversity and took the conversation to the broader topic of the importance of embracing diversity of all kinds.

Samsung’s Crossan-Matos said, “I know I understand the entire world around me far better due to the fact I work with a wide variety of people from all walks of life.” She added that the thought process for many of Samsung’s products is based on that diversity, with the notion that the buying audience is never merely one color or one gender.

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