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Study: Online retail revenues, attacks surge on Cyber Monday

BY Dan Berthiaume

Bedford, Mass. – Daily mobile/online retail revenues surge an average of 55% on Cyber Monday (the Monday after Thanksgiving), but a corresponding surge in attacks drives hard losses, on average, as much as $500,000 per hour or $8,000 per minute. In addition, a new study of 1,100 U.S., and U.K., retail IT staffers from RSA and the Ponemon Institute shows that 66% of respondents expect that disruption would result in customer churn that would damage reputation and brand and could push losses as high as $3.4 million from a single hour of disruption.

While 64% of organizations see significant increases in attack activity, more than 70% of organizations do not take additional precautions in anticipation of increased attacks. Additionally, with current capabilities, 51% say that they do not have real-time visibility into web traffic making it difficult to identify the root cause of such attacks, leaving only 23% feeling that most attacks can be quickly detected and remediated.

The report also identifies the top nine scenarios organizations will likely face approaching Cyber Monday with the vast majority categorizing these as difficult or very difficult to detect. In order of likelihood, the attack scenarios are botnet and distributed denial of service, app store fraud, mobile access/account compromise, click fraud, stolen credit card/validation, e-coupon abuse, account hijacking, electronic wallet abuse, and brand promotion hijacking.

"The competitive climate and the unpredictability of the economy does not leave organizations much margin for business error,” said Demetrios Lazankos, IT threat strategist for RSA. “Unfortunately, the stealth and savvy cybercriminals have advanced to a point where traditional security and fraud defenses on which businesses rely on are at best insufficient and at worst…obsolete. Business logic abuse hides in plain sight because it uses ‘legitimate’ processes for illegitimate gain. The problem requires universal visibility, a risk layered approach, and a new way of understanding the adversary. Isolating the outliers in crowd behavior that indicate attacks is critical for identifying malicious behavior and business logic abuse."

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J. Crew reports strong Q3 to date

BY Dan Berthiaume

New York – J. Crew Group., Inc. is reporting several strong preliminary results to date for its third quarter of fiscal 2013. Through Oct. 5, 2013, J. Crew reports revenues increased $42.9 million, or 11.3%, to $422.3 million from $379.4 million last year.

In addition, same-store sales increased 4.3% and direct net sales grew 20.7%. For the entire quarter, which ends Nov.2, revenues are estimated to increase in the range of high-single to low-double digits from $555.8 million last year; Same-store sales are estimated to increase in the mid-single digits range, after an increase of 10.4% in the third quarter last year, and direct net sales are estimated to increase in the high-teens from $156.8 million last year. J. Crew will release full quarterly results in early December.

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J. Crew proposes bond offering

BY Dan Berthiaume

New York — Chinos Intermediate Holdings A, Inc., the indirect parent company of J. Crew Group, Inc., intends to issue $500 million of senior PIK toggle notes due 2019. The notes will be offered and will be sold in a private placement to qualified institutional buyers in the U.S, pursuant to Rule 144A under the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and to non-U.S. persons in transactions outside the U.S. pursuant to Regulation S under the Securities Act.

Intermediate Holdings A intends to use the net proceeds from this offering to distribute cash to its parent company to fund a cash dividend, distribution or other payment to its equity and certain equity-award holders, and to pay related fees and expenses. The consummation of the proposed notes offering is subject to market and other conditions.

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