Sonic Drive-In confirms data hack: What’s really going on?

Published: Friday, October 06, 2017 @ 8:21 AM


            FILE
FILE

Sonic Drive-In food chain has confirmed its restaurants were impacted by a recent payment card data breach.

The food chain issued a statement this week that credit and debit card numbers may have been acquired without authorization as part of a malware attack experienced at certain Sonic Drive-In locations. The company contacted law enforcement and began its own investigation when the breach was discovered, according to a company statement.

» RELATED: Reported data breach at Sonic Drive-In could impact ‘millions’

“Your trust in Sonic is important to us and we sincerely regret any inconvenience this may cause. We have provided here more information about this situation, including an offer of free identity theft protection for affected customers,” the company said.

Customers who used their cards at Sonic locations this year can receive 24 months of free fraud detection and identity theft protection through Experian’s IdentityWorks program, the company said. The company did not disclose which specific locations were impacted by the breach.

Sonic, which operates thousands of locations across 45 states, including locations in Kettering, West Carrollton, Beavercreek, Dayton, Huber Heights, Englewood, Xenia, Franklin, Eaton, Springfield, West Chester, Hamilton and Cincinnati.

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GE Aviation, Teradata team up on airline analytics

Published: Tuesday, October 17, 2017 @ 3:46 PM

GE Aviation tests an adaptive cycle engine for military aircraft use. CONTRIBUTED
GE Aviation tests an adaptive cycle engine for military aircraft use. CONTRIBUTED

GE Aviation and Teradata are teaming up to help airlines with data, the companies said.

GE and Teradata — two important employers in Southwestern Ohio — said they will “jointly provide products and services to specified commercial aviation markets” on data analytics.

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As an example, the companies said in a joint statement “flight disruptions can be actively managed by GE with customer experience being managed by Teradata.”

“With the combined solutions, the process to manage disruptions is more complete by adding information about managing parts inventories, logistics, scheduling, and labor pools,” the companies said.

RELATEDTeradata named a ‘technology leader’

“For data and analytics, it became clear that Teradata excels at the size and scale required by a global airline,” Andrew Coleman, chief commercial officer for GE Aviation’s Digital Solutions business, said in the joint announcement. “By integrating our expertise in asset performance management and operations optimization, with Teradata’s ability to drive customer insights using massive amounts of data and multi-genre analytics, the aviation market will gain an analytic solution that delivers comprehensive insights.”

Cincinnati-based GE Aviation has some 16,000 employees across Southwestern Ohio, including a research center on the University of Dayton campus. Teradata has offices and about 400 employees in Miami Twp.

Trump's wealth, ranking fall in latest Forbes 400 list

Published: Tuesday, October 17, 2017 @ 3:23 PM
Updated: Tuesday, October 17, 2017 @ 1:54 PM

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President Donald Trump's ranking in the Forbes list of wealthiest Americans has dropped, as the magazine said the value of some of his Manhattan real estate holdings has declined recently.

Forbes ranked the first billionaire president as the 248th-wealthiest person in America and put his wealth at $3.1 billion . The year before, he was ranked 156th and Forbes said he was worth $3.7 billion.

As a candidate, Trump said his net worth was more than $10 billion, but Forbes pegged that figure at $4.5 billion in September 2015. By Forbes' estimates, Trump's wealth has fallen 31 percent in two years.

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According to Forbes, half of Trump's wealth comes from New York City real estate. It says the value of luxury real estate is down, especially around Fifth Avenue. That sharply reduced the value of Trump Tower and other properties Trump owns or has stakes in.

Forbes also said some of Trump's golf properties declined in value and that he spent $66 million on the presidential campaign as well as $25 million to settle a fraud lawsuit brought by former students in his defunct Trump University program for real estate investors.

Forbes' list is once again topped by Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates with a net worth of $89 billion, followed by Amazon's Jeff Bezos and Berkshire Hathaway's Warren Buffett.

Fuyao labor relations board hearing set for possible UAW vote

Published: Tuesday, October 17, 2017 @ 10:05 AM
Updated: Tuesday, October 17, 2017 @ 10:19 AM

Nearly all seats in the United Auto Workers 696 union hall were filled for a UAW rally in April. THOMAS GNAU/STAFF
Nearly all seats in the United Auto Workers 696 union hall were filled for a UAW rally in April. THOMAS GNAU/STAFF

The National Labor Relations Board’s Cincinnati office is starting the process of looking at whether to schedule a vote for about 1,500 Fuyao Glass America workers on whether to join the United Auto Workers (UAW).

The union isn’t saying how many signatures of Fuyao workers petitioning for a union representation election have been sent to the NLRB.

Matthew Denholm, assistant director for the NLRB Cincinnati office, said Tuesday morning no election is scheduled yet.

RELATEDFuyao Glass leaders skeptical of union support

But he said “union cards” from the UAW have been received, and the NLRB now must review them to make sure they’re “current” and that cards are signed.

A hearing on the matter is scheduled for 9 a.m. Oct. 25 at the NLRB Cincinnati office, at the 550 Main St. federal building.

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But if the union and the company reach agreement on crucial details, that hearing may be cancelled, Denholm cautioned..

Denholm said that before hearings, unions and companies sometimes reach “a stipulated election agreement.” He did not know if that will happen in the case of Fuyao. But he said the sides will try to come to an agreement on the time and place of an election and who exactly will be represented in a new bargaining unit, among other details.

Denholm added that the NLRB assumes that the signatures it has received from the UAW are from workers at the plant. But he said that if Fuyao leaders want the office to check them, the company can make a payroll list available.

UAW leaders said Tuesday they are confident an NLRB-sanctioned election will happen.

“We have workers in that plant who truly need our help,” said Rich Rankin, director of the UAW region that includes the plant in Moraine.

Fuyao leaders, however, say they want to maintain a direct relationship with workers.

“Fuyao believes that maintaining this direct relationship is in the best interest of our associates, customers, business partners, the state of Ohio, and the Dayton community in which we operate,” the company said in a statement Tuesday.

RELATEDFuyao workers seek union election: What we know now

About 1,500 hourly workers are at the Fuyao auto glass plant in Moraine. And “they’re not being paid a living wage right now,” Rankin said in a phone call from Detroit Tuesday.

No one in a UAW conference call would discuss how many worker signatures have been submitted to the NLRB. Federal law requires a 30-percent threshold — signatures from 30 percent of a workplace’s eligible workforce — to schedule a representation election, and Rankin said “it’s safe to assume” the UAW’s number of signatures exceeds that.

RELATEDGrowing pains at Fuyao plant as employees consider union

“It is our policy not to discuss the total number of signatures as they come in,” said UAW spokesman Brian Rothenberg. “But this committee feels strong enough that they filed.”

Theodore Searcy, a Fuyao worker for about 18 months, said workers at the plant off Stroop Road are “really looking forward to a time to vote.”

“This has been going on for too long,” he said.

He said employees who have to take time off from work to care for sick children or family emergencies are punished.

“They’re firing too many good workers with no excuse,” Searcy said. “Their point system is terrible, especially if anybody has any kids. It seems like Fuyao has not set us up to win, but more or less set us up to fail.”

“In the workplace, that should never be an issue,” he added. “Family should be first.”

“This is a plant that … has come to Ohio with great public investment,” Rothenberg said. “There has been a lot said how about the workers have been adjusting. There has been a lot of turnover at the plant. There have been a lot of safety issues at the plant.”

He faulted “constantly changing roles and policies at the plant,” among other problems.

The company says its approach is only starting to bear fruit.

“We became profitable only months ago,” said Tim Reynolds, Fuyao’s vice president, OEM operations. “This achievement has not been because of a third party like the UAW. It has been the result of teamwork — our folks coming together, learning how to design, make, and ship good glass and driving improvements in safety and efficiency.”

Amazon reported to sign new location for warehouse near airport

Published: Tuesday, October 17, 2017 @ 11:43 AM
Updated: Tuesday, October 17, 2017 @ 3:01 PM


            FILE
FILE

Amazon is reported to have signed a lease for a location near the Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport.

The e-commerce giant, which has been rapidly expanding its footprint around Ohio and across the country, signed a lease on Sept. 17 for the 264,000-square-foot building in Hebron at the LogistiCenter industrial park, according to a new Colliers International real estate research report.

RELATED: How Monroe landed Amazon’s next fulfillment center

Loren DeFilippo, Ohio director of research with Colliers, said Amazon has been expanding through new giant 1-million-square-foot fulfillment centers but also with a host of smaller types of buildings like the new Hebron lease as it fills out its network and gets closer to consumers front doors.

“I wouldn’t say it’s a small deal for them, but it’s a different function,” DeFilippo said.

Amazon is also shopping around the country for hundreds of much smaller spaces to lease — maybe 10,000 square feet — and has been looking at options around the Cincinnati area for these smaller spaces, he said.

RELATED: Amazon filling thousands of Ohio holiday jobs

Amazon did not immediately return a request for comment to confirm the lease.

DeFilippo said Amazon is trying to control the “last mile,” the industry phrase for the last leg of delivery. As e-commerce companies like Amazon grow, they have been racing to control the entire delivery process in order to be faster, more reliable, and more efficient. This means a large network of small locations to speed the delivery process to people’s homes.

RELATED: Dayton, Cincy team up to lure Amazon’s $5-billion headquarters

The apparent new lease in Hebron is in addition to the more than $1 billion Prime Air hub Amazon is working on by the Cincinnati airport.

Amazon is also planning a giant fulfillment center in Monroe. With the aid of hefty tax credits, the company plans to create more than 1,000 full-time jobs at a 1-million-square-foot warehouse in the Warren County portion of Monroe.