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Daily Archives: July 23, 2021

BrandSafway Announces New EVP and Chief Legal Officer

Imran Hayat brings global strategic general counsel experience to leading access and industrial services company

Kennesaw, Georgia, USA, July 22, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — BrandSafway, a global leader in access and industrial services, has announced that Imran Hayat has joined the company as executive vice president (EVP) and chief legal officer (CLO), effective July 19, 2021.

“Imran has an excellent track record as a global strategic general counsel,” said Karl Fessenden, president and CEO of BrandSafway. “He has extensive experience building and managing legal, risk, compliance and governance teams, and developing strong partnerships internally and externally to drive enterprise and shareholder success. His strategic mindset coupled with his deep domain expertise makes him a great addition to our team.”

Most recently, Hayat served as EVP, general counsel and chief strategy officer for CHC Helicopter Corporation. Prior to CHC, Hayat was in private practice where he advised some of the world’s preeminent public and private companies.

Hayat is looking forward to working with the BrandSafway leadership and legal teams. “I’m excited to join the BrandSafway team,” said Hayat. “BrandSafway is a dynamic and growing company with a strong executive team and a great internal legal and risk team. The company is well-positioned for continued success.”

Hayat earned his law degree from the University of California, Hastings College of the Law in San Francisco and holds a bachelor’s degree in both economics and diplomacy and world affairs from Occidental College in Los Angeles.

About BrandSafway
With a commitment to safety as its foremost value, BrandSafway provides the broadest range of solutions with the greatest depth of expertise to the industrial, commercial and infrastructure markets. Through a network of 360 strategic locations across 30 countries and more than 38,000 employees, BrandSafway delivers a full range of forming, shoring, scaffolding, work access and industrial service solutions. BrandSafway supports maintenance and refurbishment projects as well as new construction and expansion plans with unmatched service from expert local labor and management. Today’s BrandSafway is At Work For You® — leveraging innovation and economies of scale to increase safety and productivity, while remaining nimble and responsive. For more information about BrandSafway, visit www.brandsafway.com.


Karla Cuculi

Skullcandy Taps Channel Signal to Amp Up Its Reviews Landscape and Gain Critical Customer Insights

PARK CITY, Utah, July 22, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Channel Signal, the leading aggregator of product reviews and analysis, today announced its working with Skullcandy Inc., the #1 selling North American brand in stereo headphones and true wireless earbuds under $100 – to increase conversion rates. Channel Signal is now helping Skullcandy systematically monitor, measure and understand their online reviews to improve its customer service and product development, while generating additional revenue.

According to a study by Womply, businesses with more than the average number of reviews across all review sites bring in 54% more in annual revenue. With its explosive growth in ecommerce, Skullcandy realized the importance of gathering product reviews from multiple platforms, centralizing that data and making it accessible to a variety of different business stakeholders to help it better serve their growing customer base.

Skullcandy recognized Channel Signal’s unique ability to not only aggregate reviews from across the internet (Amazon, major retailers, etc.) but to then clean and validate each. Next, using enhanced analytics, Channel Signal allows Skullcandy to better understand the needs of its customers in order to drive product development and growth and ultimately increase revenue.

“We looked at a number of different solutions to monitor and aggregate our reviews data,” said Mark Hopkins, Chief Information Officer, Skullcandy, Inc. “We partnered with Channel Signal because their platform gives us the detailed visibility we need in an easy to use package.  In addition, we can seamlessly integrate the data into our advanced analytics platform.  This opens the door for next level insights to help us understand things like themes and sentiment.  We are using this data to better understand what our customers like, what we can improve, and to drive our product roadmap.”

To learn more about Channel Signal’s offerings, including its Consumer2Consumer (C2C) Score, the first independent and unbiased review score located at the buy button, please visit www.channelsignal.com

About Channel Signal
Channel Signal empowers retailers and brands to expedite the path to purchase by giving consumers trusted information for more confident buying decisions at the point of purchase, with fewer clicks – reducing cart abandonment and increasing conversion rates by 25%.

As an independent aggregator and verifier of online product reviews, Channel Signal collects, cleans, and validates reviews from all major sites. An accurate and reliable score at the buy button drives faster and more confident decisions with fewer clicks. While other vendors simply syndicate reviews, Channel Signal ensures the reviews are real, relevant, and ready to drive confident buying decisions.

About Skullcandy®
Skullcandy is the original lifestyle audio brand, born in 2003 through an idea that was discovered while riding a chairlift in Park City, Utah. Fast forward to today where Skullcandy is the #1 selling brand in Stereo Headphones1 and True Wireless Earbuds2 under $100, is on a mission “to unleash the visceral power of music for all.” Skullcandy headphones and earbuds are created, tuned and tested to deliver music you can feel, specially engineered to provide a deeper, more immersive listening experience. The brand supports charitable causes through its Music With A Mission program where dedicated campaigns and a portion of proceeds from limited-edition product sales help make an impact. Skullcandy designs, markets, and distributes its audio products through a variety of distribution channels globally. The company’s website can be found at www.Skullcandy.com.


Matt Berry
Conversion Marketing

Rising COVID Cases in Port Sudan Could Be Caused by Delta Variant

KHARTOUM – Health authorities in Sudan’s Red Sea state town of Port Sudan say they have seen a significant increase in the number of COVID-19 cases in recent days and suspect the rise is due to the highly contagious delta variant.

Health officials say over the past week they have recorded nearly 140 new cases of the virus.

Doctor Zafaran Ahmed Azzaki, director general at the Red Sea state health ministry, told VOA’s South Sudan in Focus that symptoms in the new cases appear slightly different from those identified in the previous wave of COVID-19 cases, prompting health officials to believe the new wave could be linked to the delta variant.

“The infection rate has been very high in recent days, and we still believe that there are a lot of positive cases that are not reaching the hospital. Suspected cases have increased and 90 percent of them are found positive and automatically, cases of death also have increased,” Dr. Azzaki said.

Health workers in Red Sea state recorded at least 60 COVID-19-related deaths in the past two months, about the same amount recorded during the entire six-month period of the first wave, according to Dr. Azzaki, adding that, “Death cases within this third wave have increased drastically but when you look at the timeframe of two months, it has reached 60, and this is our worry.”

Last week, state medical workers collected 170 suspected cases out of which 137 tested positive, said the state health ministry official.

The World Health Organization’s regional office for Africa reported on July 15 the continent recorded a 43% week-on-week rise in COVID-19 deaths.

Deaths increase across Africa

Continent-wide, fatalities increased to 6,273 in the week ending July 11 from 4,384 deaths in the previous week. Africa is now less than 1% shy of the weekly peak reached in January when 6,294 deaths were recorded, according to the WHO.

Africa recorded one million additional cases over the past month.

The WHO says the surge is driven by public fatigue with key health measures and an increased spread of variants. To date, the delta variant, which is currently the most transmissible of all variants, has been detected in 21 African countries.

Red Sea state health ministry officials have been unable to determine how many new cases are caused by the delta variant and say they will need assistance from a recognized outside laboratory institution.

Samples sent to South Africa

Dr. Azzaki said her team has sent some samples for testing to South Africa and expects results within a few days.

“We have already agreed to send all positive cases to South Africa so that the National Ministry of Health can confirm if the new infection is from the Indian strain or not but according to the symptoms, this strain spreads faster and its transition period is also quick,” Azzaki told VOA.

Red Sea state authorities ordered a partial lockdown in Port Sudan for a two-week period, which ended Friday, but due to the recent surge in cases, health officials have recommended the lockdown be extended for another two weeks, said Azzaki.

She called on citizens celebrating the Eid-al-Adha holiday to follow all health directives and protocols, including mask wearing, social distancing, avoiding all public gatherings, and frequent hand washing.

Source: Voice Of America

Kaseya Gets Master Decryption Key After July 4 Global Attack

BOSTON, MASSACHUSETTS – The Florida company whose software was exploited in the devastating Fourth of July weekend ransomware attack, Kaseya, has received a universal key that will decrypt all of the more than 1,000 businesses and public organizations crippled in the global incident.

Kaseya spokeswoman Dana Liedholm would not say Thursday how the key was obtained or whether a ransom was paid. She said only that it came from a “trusted third party” and that Kaseya was distributing it to all victims. The cybersecurity firm Emsisoft confirmed that the key worked and was providing support.

Ransomware analysts offered multiple possible explanations for why the master key, which can unlock the scrambled data of all the attack’s victims, has now appeared. They include: Kaseya paid; a government paid; a number of victims pooled funds; the Kremlin seized the key from the criminals and handed it over through intermediaries — or perhaps the main attacker didn’t get paid by the gang whose ransomware was used.

The Russia-linked criminal syndicate that supplied the malware, REvil, disappeared from the internet on July 13. That likely deprived whoever carried out the attack of income because such affiliates split ransoms with the syndicates that lease them the ransomware. In the Kaseya attack, the syndicate was believed overwhelmed by more ransom negotiations than it could manage, and decided to ask $50 million to $70 million for a master key that would unlock all infections.

By now, many victims will have rebuilt their networks or restored them from backups.

It’s a mixed bag, Liedholm said, because some “have been in complete lockdown.” She had no estimate of the cost of the damage and would not comment on whether any lawsuits may have been filed against Kaseya. It is not clear how many victims may have paid ransoms before REvil went dark.

The so-called supply-chain attack of Kaseya was the worst ransomware attack to date because it spread through software that companies known as managed service providers use to administer multiple customer networks, delivering software updates and security patches.

President Joe Biden called his Russian counterpart, Vladimir Putin, afterward to press him to stop providing safe haven for cybercriminals whose costly attacks the U.S. government deems a national security threat. He has threatened to make Russia pay a price for failing to crack down, but has not specified what measures the U.S. may take.

If the universal decryptor for the Kaseya attack was turned over without payment, it would not be the first time ransomware criminals have done that. It happened after the Conti gang hobbled Ireland’s national health care service in May and the Russian Embassy in Dublin offered “to help with the investigation.”

Source: Voice Of America