Exploitation of Remote Work Tools and Software

Scammers are taking advantage of the increase in people working from home and the use of video conferencing tools such as Zoom, Microsoft Team and Blue Jeans. The NCSC and CISA have reported phishing emails with attachments using these remote work platform names to trick users into downloading malicious files. Some examples of reported phishing emails include ‘microsoft-teams_V#mu#D_##########.exe’ and ‘zoom-us-zoom_##########.exe’. It is important to remain vigilant when clicking  links and downloading files. Be wary of file names that include strange character stings and investigate the legitimacy of a link by hovering your cursor over it to reveal the URL destination without clicking on it.

CONTROLTEK Launches Computer Vision Platform for Facial Recognition and Health Compliance Monitoring

BRIDGEWATER, N.J. (Apr, 23, 2020)CONTROLTEK a leader in retail asset protection and security solutions, announces the release of new enterprise computer vision platform, CMatch AI. Powered by cutting edge, deep learning technology, CMatch AI delivers real-time, precise, reliable, and secure biometric applications critical for solving challenges unique to a wide range of industries including retail and financial institutions.

“CMatch AI is truly a computer vision platform that harnesses the power of video to help retailers and banks identify threats in real time. The platform delivers a variety of applications for facial recognition, health compliance, access control, occupancy verification and behavior analytics,” said Tom Meehan, CFI, CONTROTLEK’s chief strategy officer and chief information security officer. “CMatch AI’s impressive technology exceeds facial recognition performance, accuracy, security standards and flexibility for modifications to help combat the changing times. This has been a long-term project and we’re excited to officially launch it to our industry partners.”

“The CMatch AI technology applications are versatile to help with a variety of challenges businesses are faced with especially with the current climate and focus to keep customers and employees healthy and safe,” said Rubin Press, the vice president of global sales at CONTROLTEK. “The CMatch AI Health Compliance System addresses health safety concerns with the use of state-of-the art sensor technology to allow for non-contact preventative screenings. A variety of applications including thermographic fever scanning, mask compliance detection and highly accurate and definitive counts for occupancy verification, precisely verify whether an individual is safe to enter a facility.”

“We’ve been helping our customers solve their unique business challenges for over 40 years,” said CONTROLTEK CEO, Rod Diplock. “Expanding our solutions offering to include a computer vision platform is another way to add value for our customers and to help them address threats and safety concerns.”

More information about CMatch AI and the health compliance module, along with downloadable data sheets, can be found at CONTROLTEK’s website.

COVID-19 Scam Text Messages

Many have reported receiving text messages related to being exposed to COVID-19. The messages have been reported to say:  “Someone who came in contact with you has tested positive or has shown symptoms for COVID-19.” They then recommend you get tested for COVID 19. The link is not from an official organization and is a phishing attempt to get your personal information.

The Federal Trade Commission says they have received more than 25,000 complaints about COVID-19 fraud since the beginning of this year. Remember to always go to a trusted source for information about COVID 19.

Industry Veterans Team Up to Discuss the Rapidly Changing Environment and ‘New Normal’ Related to COVID-19

https://lpresearch.org/covid-19-resources/BRIDGEWATER, N.J. (Apr, 16, 2020) – Industry experts discuss how retailers are coping with the changes and impacts the Coronavirus pandemic is having on the retail loss prevention industry. In each weekly CrimeScience COVID-19 Series podcast, Dr. Read Hayes covers LPRC initiatives related to the pandemic, Tom Meehan, CFI reviews risk and vulnerabilities in technology and Tony D’Onofrio discusses the ‘new normal’ from current events.

“We have started our new LPRC CrimeScience COVID-19 series to thoroughly discuss dynamics and evidence-based solutions during these uncertain times,” said Dr. Read Hayes, research scientist at University of Florida and director of LPRC. “In addition to this podcast, the LPRC is leveraging multiple research and other data sources to support our nearly 70 major retail chains in helping maintain customer and employee confidence.”

“The COVID-19 situation has forced us to change how we physically operate to protect the health and safety of our employees, customers and partners. Adversaries have jumped on the opportunity to exploit the crisis, taking advantage of people and businesses,” Tom Meehan, CFI, chief strategy officer and chief information security officer at CONTROLTEK. “The podcast aims to keep our industry informed of cyber-threats and proactive security measures to stay vigilant against risks and maintain a healthy security posture during this time.”

“The COVID-19 health crisis is transformational and will lead to a ‘new normal’. For all of us, this is a once in a lifetime moment for reinventing and discovering the next set of professional growth model,” said Tony D’Onofrio, chief executive officer of TD Insights. “In this new LPRC podcast series, we will explore, through science-backed research, the ‘new normal’ and how to leverage it to positively optimize the Loss Prevention function for a more prosperous digitally-evolved retail industry.”

The CrimeScience COVID-19 Series podcast, will be released every Thursday. In addition, the latest information on COVID-19 can be found at the following resources: CONTROLTEK COVID-19 Response Center, LPRC COVID-19 Resources, TonyDonofrio.com.

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About CONTROLTEK
Since 1976 CONTROLTEK has been a global leader in tamper-evident security packaging, helping banks, armored couriers and retailers transport cash safely and securely. The company’s expanding line of inventory protection and visibility solutions also helps retailers protect their merchandise better and run their operations more efficiently. As a second-generation family owned business, with a history of stable growth and a reputation for strong customer focus, CONTROLTEK continues to deliver on its mission every single day: to provide solutions that protect and to always deliver on their promises.

Media Contact
Kim Scott
Director of Marketing
(908) 603-0066
Kim.Scott@controltekusa.com

Ensure Your VPN is Secure With the Latest Software Patches and Cybersecurity Configurations

Companies commonly use an enterprise virtual private network (VPN) solution to connect remote employees to their organization’s IT network. An increase in vulnerabilities are being found and targeted by malicious cyber actors during the current Coronavirus situation. It is vital to keep VPNs, network infrastructure devices, and devices being used to connect into work environments up-to-date with the latest software patches and cybersecurity configurations.

Ensure you have good VPN security hygiene with these helpful articles from Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA):  Understanding Patches and Securing Network Infrastructure Devices.

CONTROLTEK Launches COVID-19 Response Center

BRIDGEWATER, N.J. (Apr, 9, 2020)CONTROLTEK a leader in retail asset protection and tamper-evident packaging launches a COVID-19 Response Center with information and resources for retail and financial institution partners to stay abreast of the latest regarding the Coronavirus situation.

“Now more than ever, the power of community, trust and quality information is so important,” said CONTROLTEK CEO, Rod Diplock. “As a business owner navigating this extreme situation, the most valuable resources have been shared to me by peers and business professionals. I want to do whatever I can to pass that along to our industry partners and customers to help them during this challenging time.”

“Our focus is always finding ways to support our clients with the challenges loss prevention and asset protection professionals face in their work,” said Tom Meehan, CFI, chief strategy officer and chief information security officer. “We believe it is our responsibility to look after each other, especially during this complex time. We are all in this together.”

The CONTROLTEK COVID-19 Response Center offers news updates, articles pertinent for LP professionals, cybersecurity technology tips, available business essentials and PPE equipment and helpful tools from the World Health Organization (WHO) and Center of Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Visit the CONTROLTEK COVID-19 Response Center, to learn more.

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About CONTROLTEK
Since 1976 CONTROLTEK has been a global leader in tamper-evident security packaging, helping banks, armored couriers and retailers transport cash safely and securely. The company’s expanding line of inventory protection and visibility solutions also helps retailers protect their merchandise better and run their operations more efficiently. As a second-generation family owned business, with a history of stable growth and a reputation for strong customer focus, CONTROLTEK continues to deliver on its mission every single day: to provide solutions that protect and to always deliver on their promises.

Media Contact
Kim Scott
Director of Marketing
(908) 603-0066
Kim.Scott@controltekusa.com

CONTROLTEK Delivers Essential Business and PPE Supplies

BRIDGEWATER, N.J. (Apr, 9, 2020)CONTROLTEK  a leader in retail asset protection and tamper-evident packaging provides essential security, operational and personal protective equipment (PPE) supplies to retail, banking and logistical customers amidst COVID-19.

CONTROLTEK has been a supplier of business-critical supplies like tamper-evident tape, labels, seals, and packaging to transport everything from cash, important documents, medication and biohazard materials for over a decade. The current COVID-19 crisis has heightened the demand and inquiries from customers as businesses look for security solutions to protect their assets during this unprecedented time.

“As we all adapt to the new norm that is presented by Coronavirus, we are seeing businesses implement enhanced security precautions to protect their products in transit and ensure uninterrupted delivery for their customers” said Rubin Press, vice president of global sales. “We want to inform our retail partners that we have these business essentials if needed, to help combat rapidly evolving challenges.”

“We understand that an even higher priority than asset protection is the health and safety of employees and customers,” said Tom Meehan, CFI, chief strategy officer and chief information security officer. “We have leveraged our diverse supply chain to access critical personal protective equipment (PPE) such as hand sanitizer, face masks and face shields to have them available for our retail partners.”

For more information contact your CONTROLTEK representative at 888.808.6970 or sales@controltekusa.com. A variety of security supplies and personal protective equipment can also be conveniently purchased online at the CONTROLTEK store.

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About CONTROLTEK
Since 1976 CONTROLTEK has been a global leader in tamper-evident security packaging, helping banks, armored couriers and retailers transport cash safely and securely. The company’s expanding line of inventory protection and visibility solutions also helps retailers protect their merchandise better and run their operations more efficiently. As a second-generation family owned business, with a history of stable growth and a reputation for strong customer focus, CONTROLTEK continues to deliver on its mission every single day: to provide solutions that protect and to always deliver on their promises.

Media Contact
Kim Scott
Director of Marketing
(908) 603-0066
Kim.Scott@controltekusa.com

Phone Interview Tips for Superheroes

By Stefanie Hoover, CFI

By now your inbox has probably been saturated with tips on how to stay productive while working from home. Most of them may seem fairly obvious, as a work-from-home professional for the past seven years, I still read them looking for new ideas. For my investigator friends, I thought this would be a good time to get out and dust off some pointers for conducting phone interviews. Chances are high that people are still stealing and that you will still have to deal with it—no matter that you are quarantined.

As we all get used to a new normal for the near term, hopefully you’ll get excited about the prospect of phone interviewing, whether you’re a veteran or a rookie at the “art of interviewing” over the phone. Instead of presenting the entire method, here are some boiled down tidbits as a refresher.

First, let’s look at it for what it is—a chance to be a Superhero while still wearing your jammies, sweatpants, or whatever makes you comfy and productive. Especially in this strange time, doesn’t everyone want to picture Batman in a onesie? Batman, just doing his thing remotely, scanning his laptop while Alfred works at least six feet away in the other room, catching bad guys and using the Bat Phone to get confessions. (Yes, I am home bound, and the imagination is starting to kick in).

Tip #1. Make sure your versions of Alfred know they need to be quiet during your phone call. 
Set up something for them to do ahead of time that will take at least two hours. It’s not that you’ll need two hours to do the interview, you’ll need this time to focus on your prep and wrapping up the call. I can vividly remember starting an interview during naptime and having to juggle the mute button while I found something for the dogs to chew on. It’s more than awkward trying to have a business conversation with a dog barking. Oh, and make sure you remember if the mute button is on or not. I’m not naming names, but a customer once heard me telling my dog to sit, and it was pure comedy!

Tip #2. Have all your tools at the ready.
I’m a big fan of phone interviews and this is one of the reasons: you can absolutely be looking at evidence while you’re talking to the subject, they have no idea. Continuity and flow of the conversation is very important during a phone interview. Don’t let yourself get too distracted by looking for documents. Have you ever noticed when someone on the phone with you is looking at their email? They suddenly give vague answers and seem checked out. Same thing for a phone interview but magnified, the subject is listening very intently to what you’re saying so you must be engaged the entire time. No checking Facebook!

Tip #3. Make sure the witness at the other end is fully prepped.
It’s their time to be like your sidekick Robin. Robin was a Superhero too, right? They need to know how this process works and exactly what their role is so they can feel like a Superhero when you’re done. Go through the what-ifs that might come up. “Robin, here’s what you’re going to do if they hang up on me. This is the plan if they won’t sit down and pick up the phone. Here’s the next step if they refuse to talk. Here’s our plan if they won’t write a statement. Here’s the final phase after we get the written statement.” Go through all the scenarios ahead of time and remember, Robin has likely never been a witness to a phone interview before, so this is all new territory.

Tip #4. Have the rest of the Justice League lined up to ready to help. 
Human resources, your boss, and store management, if needed, should be aware of what’s happening (follow your company guidelines). Even though I found that phone interviews were smoother and easier to handle than a face-to-face interview, you never know when something will go sideways. This is not the time to surprise your team. Have your ducks in a row ahead of time and get your business partners briefed so they can make informed decisions quickly. Especially during these stressful days, don’t add to the burden on your team.

Tip #5. Lastly, practice your method ahead of time, including the rationalizations you plan to use. 

I’m pretty sure Batman tries out throwing those little metal bat shaped things before he goes out and uses them. You should practice, too! In a phone interview, it’s important to exude confidence with your voice, as that’s all the interaction you’re going to have with the subject. No body language here. Confidence comes with practice. Use your significant other, who’s probably at home too, as a guinea pig. Get on your phones and do the introductory statement, ask for honest feedback. Or connect with your other homebound loss prevention teammates and practice over the phone. This time in our history is an opportunity to get some training and hone some skills we’ve been too busy to complete. Turn lemons into lemonade people!

We’re going to get through this, I’m hearing great things from many of my retail friends about teams pulling together. Let’s help each other and lift up our communities. We’ll rise above it, just like The Dark Knight Rises, and be back out there fighting crime in person soon enough. Stay healthy Superheroes!

Be on the lookout for anyone selling products that claim to prevent, treat, or cure COVID-19

In this special edition of Tom’s Tek Tips, we will focus on risk. With the current situation related to COVID-19 there are a host of scammers trying to take advantage of people and the situation. Some old tricks, some new. My hope is that these tips will keep you cyber safe during these unprecedented times.  

Be on the lookout for anyone selling products that claim to prevent, treat, or cure COVID-19. Counterfeit products such as sanitizing products and Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), including N95 respirator masks, goggles, full face shields, protective gowns, and gloves. You can get more information on unapproved or counterfeit PPE at www.cdc.gov/niosh or on the U.S. Food and Drug Administration website, www.fda.gov . If you need PPE try to source it from reputable companies or someone you have done business within the past.