Prime News Ghana

Today's Ghana Business, Banking and Economic news

Yahoo takes the punch for the biggest cyber attack with "one billion" user accounts hacked

In a series of developments on corporate cyber attacks, Yahoo has disclosed that more than one billion of its user accounts may have been affected by a hacking attack that dates back to 2013.The electronic mail giant said it appeared separate from a 2014 breach disclosed in September when Yahoo revealed 500 million accounts had been accessed. Yahoo claims that only names, phone numbers, passwords and email addresses were stolen, but not bank or payment data. The company, set to be taken over by Verizon, said it was working closely with the police and other security authorities. Yahoo said it "believes an unauthorized third party, in August 2013, stole data associated with more than one billion user accounts". It further asserted the breach "is likely distinct from the incident the company disclosed on September 22, 2016". However, the three-year-old hack was uncovered as part of continuing investigations by authorities and security experts into the 2014 breach, the Internet giant said. Account users were advised to change their passwords and security questions.

The California-based company has more than a billion monthly active users, many of which have multiple accounts. There is also a host of inactive or dormant account.

Cyber security expert Troy Hunt told a reporter: "This would be far and away the largest data breach we've ever seen. In fact, the 500 million they reported a few months ago would have been, and to see that number now double is unprecedented." The company further claims that some of the breaches could be linked to state-sponsored activity, as with the previous attack.

Prof Peter Sommer, a specialist in digital forensics at Birmingham City University, speaking to a reporter said he could be persuaded it was a state-sponsored hack, "but at the moment I'm not". He expressed his doubts by saying "What on earth is a state going to do with one billion accounts of ordinary users? That's the difficulty I have". In September, when Yahoo disclosed the 2014 data breach, the company said information had been "stolen by what we believe is a state-sponsored actor", but it did not say which country it held responsibly.

While this latest disclosure raises fresh questions about Verizon's $4.8bn proposed acquisition of Yahoo, and whether the US mobile carrier will try to modify or abandon its bid, it also reasserts the larger threats to national security of various nations posed by recurring individual, corporate or state-sponsored cyber attacks.

Inflation drops to 15.5% in November

The prices of goods and services in the month of November was fairly stable as inflation for the month went down.

Inflation dipped from 15.8% in October to 15.5% in November 2016.

This is the lowest in the last twelve months.

The year-on-year non-food inflation rate for November 2016 was 18.7% compared with 19.4% in October.

The year-on-year food inflation rate for November 2016 was 9.3% compared with 8.7 in October.

Inflation for imported items also stood at 16.2 in November. This is 1.0% higher than the rate of locally produced items which recorded 15.2%.

The main price drivers for the non-food rate were; Transport, education, recreation and culture, housing, water, electricity, gas and other fuels among others.

The price drivers for food inflation rate were; Mineral water, soft drinks, fruit and vegetable juices, coffee, tea and cocoa among others.

Greater Accra recorded the highest inflation rate of 18.1%, Ashanti region came second with 15.8% while Volta region recorded the lowest of 13.1%.

The acting government statistician, Baah Wadieh, explained to Starr Businesses' Osei Owusu Amankwaah that the dip in the rate signifies that the rate of goods and services were fairly stable but didn't reduce.

He added that the non food group was the main cause of the dip as there was enough supply of goods during the period.

source: Starrfmonline

Will the new national airline fly?

The proposed establishment of a new national airline, after the demise of Ghana Airways and its successor, Ghana International Airlines, has been in the works for about two years.

Italy's biggest bank set for 14,000 job cut

In a series of economic storms that has hit Eurozone’s third largest economy following prime minister Matteo Renzi's resignation, Italy's biggest bank plans to raise €13 billion ($13.8 billion) and slash thousands of jobs to boost its finances.

Beyond the Fanfare: Akufo Addo and the challenges of an ailing economy

It might seem like an endless period of generous fanfare for Ghana’s President-elect, Nana Akufo Addo but as the staggering realities in the country would sooner or later prove that this supposed honeymoon like the moonlight is set to fade away under the dark clouds of the nation’s economic night.

OmniBank offers free SME training to fashion designers

Over 80 graduates of Abbi Creation University College have benefitted from a free capacity training at OmniBank’s SME clinic. The mentorship programme is aimed at aiding the new fashion designers in developing their skills to enable them build sustainable businesses.

Fuel Prices reduced at the pumps by 1 to 4%

Chamber of Petroleum Consumers Ghana(COPECGH) has announced a drop in fuel prices across most oil marketing companies (OMCs) between 1 to 4.23 percent barely a day to end the of the final pricing window for the month of November.

An Icebreaker: WTO rules Boeing's state subsidies illegal

Whether or not to maintain government subsidy on certain products or services in a bid to make them accessible or affordable has created considerable debate in most countries and has even resulted in major labour actions in those places.

Vodafone Cash instrumental in the growth of the financial sector

Ghana’s financial services sector is yet to reach majority of the non-bankable population but the introduction of mobile money has over the years ensured that many Ghanaians have moved into mainstream financial services, Head of Service at Vodafone Ghana, Martison Obeng- Agyei has said.

A House Divided Against Itself: the Tata Power Struggle

Over the last few decades or perhaps a century, the Asian economy has produced many global enterprise leaders ranging from the electronic or tech giant - Panasonic, online market place or store, Alibaba, Huawei, etc. In the midst of this fiercely competitive Asian market one firm keeps towering high perhaps for nearly a century and half now, the name; Tata.

Spanning over 148 years now, Tata Group is India’s largest conglomerate with stakes in more than 100 independent companies, several of which bear the Tata brand and a stunning 660,000 employees: Tata Group is just the consummate example of a truly global brand. But that towering status or glittering reputation has somewhat been tainted in the last few months (at least from when it became apparent to the public) following its internal power struggle that has resulted in the probable dismissal and subsequent replacement of its chairman, the Irish – Indian business man, Cyrus Mistry. All these events have drawn the attention of the public in a bid to reconcile what Tata has been known for and the actual realities in the organization. It was once remarked by Prof. Kulwant Singh of the NUC Business School in Singapore that, “ there is a great sense of pride in being a staff member of a Tata company and that follows from the ethical standards that the senior leaders have held themselves to”. Now there is little to be said of those ethical standards with its numerous employees uncertain about who really is at the helm of affairs and a watching world puzzled by how easily a brand of Tata’s repute could be so easily thrust into a near self-destructive power saga.

Now, with Mistry’s family holding 18% shares of the group since 1930s and an obviously reasonable number of supporters among the ranks of the Tata companies (Motor, Steel, Beverages, etc.) as well as the Tata sons opting for the company’s patriarch, Ratan Tata as a replacement for the ousted chairman coupled with speculations captured in the words of Prof. Singh that “there appear to be factions that have emerged within the boards of Tata companies” and that “at least some of these board members are reluctant to follow through on Tata’s Sons’ attempt to oust him[Cyrus Mistry]”, one cannot but wonder at what would become of this feud.