Cyber Attacks Continue as Malware Hits PoS of Four Food Outlets

Cyber attacks in business systems will continue to rise, reaching a point of becoming a norm, as forewarned by the Global Risks Report in 2018,. In the recent past 2 days, four food businesses, namely Moe’s Southwest Grill, McAlister’s Deli, Schlotzsky’s and Hy-Vee Supermarket, came out with reports that their Point of Sale (PoS) machines were infected by a malware that was able to steal customer information.

Focus Brands, the owner of the three food chains, said the company’s network was infected with malware that copied information from cards that entered point-of-sale payment systems across different locations. All three Focus Brands food outlets are spread through 1,500 different locations across American states.

Hy-Vee supermarkets,on the other hand, operate in about 254 retail sites in convenience stores, drug stores, groceries and fuel pumps.

Synopsis of Focus Brand’s Report on PoS Malware Attacks

According to Focus Brands, cyber attacks that infiltrated their network via the three food subsidiaries had started on three different dates. Although cyber security experts were able to end the malware intrusion on July 22, 2019, the report did not give specific details about the customer cards that had been scraped for information.

The malware operation began last April 11 at a Schlotzsky’s outlet, while the attacks at McAlister’s and Moe’s began in April 29, 2019.

Synopsis of Hy-Vee’s Report on PoS Malware Attacks

Unlike the malware that attacked the three Focus Brands food chain for only about a month, the HY-Vee malware had been present in the PoS systems since November 2018. It was detected only in July 29, when unauthorized activities started registering on some of their PoS processing machines. It was only then that cyber security experts were called upon to conduct an investigation.

The malware operation in fuel pump PoS transpired since December 14, 2018, while the attacks in PoS drive-thrus and restaurants began in January 15, 2019. Yet in six still undetermined locations, experts suspects that the malware may have operated by as early as November 09, 2018.

Hy-Vee’s latest update about the cyber attacks included a lookup tool for identifying the Hy-Vee fuel pumps, restaurants and drive-thru coffee shops, and restaurants whose PoS were compromised. That way customers can determine if they had used their payment card payment during the periods indicated.

How to have Good Investment from Your Vehicle?

Automobiles are one of the investments that you don’t want to make in your life. As you drive them out of the car dealer’s lot, it loses value right off the bat. They need additional costs as well to stay operational like:

  • Oil
  • Insurance
  • Maintenance
  • Repairs

You will be surprised how much it costs you for a year to keep your car operational after calculating everything. And to make things worse, by the time that you have made a decision to sell it, you’d only get a fraction of what you’ve initially paid for it.

Indeed it’s a poor investment choice. However, it is one that every adult thought all throughout their lives. For those who are in the market buying for their nth car and thinking how it can be a good investment in the long run, then I recommend that you read the entire content of this article.

Thorough Research before making Talks to Dealerships

Among the surefire ways of getting poor deal on any vehicle is going to the dealership without knowing anything. Walking out of the dealership without evaluating hard data and figuring out how it works for you, eventually you will regret your decision.

So before making a decision, do your homework first. Gather as much info as you could about the car from its model, make and year.

If needed be, then spend few or more hours on it. It may be time consuming at first, but it would be worth it in the end.

A Name Known for Reliability

If you truly want to make a good investment of a car, then look at its reliability. Reliability is extremely important for it is the single factor that minimizes the repair costs and give the vehicle long lifespan. By buying a car make and model known for reliability, you get to drive it longer on road, keep it out of maintenance and retain its market value. Now that is a smart investment especially when taking car title loans in California.

Fuel Economy for Total Investment Worthy Car

Aside from reliability, watch out for the car’s fuel efficiency. Gas mileage is vital when buying a car. Let me give you an example.

One model is getting roughly 18 miles per gallon and then, the other car is getting 28 miles per gallon. Now, on a normal driving year which is about (10,000 miles), that is a total consumption of 198.4 gallons. Assuming that 4 dollars is the price of fuel per gallon, you automatically saved 792 dollars. Mind you, the price of gas is fluctuating.

Applying for Business Loans

In order to put up a small business from scratch or to maintain operations, it should have proper financing or funding. In most cases, this is referred to as a business loan. One kind of small business financing is called as debt financing.

Here, small businesses may file an application to banks or to other financial institutions such as:

  • Credit unions and;
  • Commercial loans

Normally, banks will not release or approve loans for startup businesses. They are more likely to do so for an ongoing business. To assist you get through this deliberate process, follow the application process for such a loan.

You Think You Know it All?

It is pretty obvious that owners of small business know the reason as well as the amount of loan that they need. However, this is an entirely different story when the business is just a startup.

Start-up owners might be in the process of calculating the figures they need and to why they have reached that amount.

Whether the company is an existing business or startup, they have to take time and articulate whey they have to apply for Zebra loans and how much they exactly need. More often than not, they can’t address this question until they have prepared their financial statement as part of the business plan.

Prepare for Proper Documentation

In case that your business is just a startup or perhaps, less than 3 years old, then your personal credit would be evaluated. At the same time, prepare the history of your business credit as well. Before applying for small business loan, you have to take time in reviewing your personal credit score and have it organized as well. If ever you found any errors, write a letter to the agency detailing the error and asked it to be fixed.

If the error is something that the agency would not fix, then file for credit dispute report. Ideally, credit score of somewhere around 700 can boost your odds of getting a business loan approval. It will be nice to get in touch with commercial banks that are available to you. Don’t just talk to any banks in random. Do your research as well on which institution where you have better chances of getting an approval.

This would take some time to find the right agency and get your loan but trust me, if you do things carefully, everything will be worth it!

What is Crowdfunding and it Levels the Field for Investors and Inventors?

You might have heard about crowdfunding. But do you exactly know what it means? Basically, this is the combination of crowdsourcing and micro-financing. The outcome, people are flocking to support a common project, cause or company in different parts of the globe. These people are pooling their money in startup businesses either with expected return or rewards in the end or just as a plain gift.

The great thing about crowdfunding is that, it can be utilized as another form of investment that can be used in specific purpose like for budding innovations, Cryptocurrency signals
and so forth. This is referred to as equity crowdfunding or otherwise known as loan based crowdfunding. This has great potential of shaping the future of a private organization.

You are investing in a startup company with expectations of getting returns in the future.

Creating a Win-Win Situation?

When crowdfunding is used as investment, it benefits both the investor and the people involved in the creation of a new product/service. You may be wondering how?

As mentioned, it lets you look through the investment and collect all information before finalizing your decision. You don’t need to get into the investment right away. Rather, you have the opportunity of gathering data and analyze before making the final decision.

At the same time, you are supporting the continuous development of economy. Without your money to startup ventures as well as new startups, odds are they will not be able to get off of the ground. Because the economy is stable and having annuity rates and low interests, it leads to great gains and easily outweighing the risks. And for investors, this results to higher returns.

How it’s Benefiting the Business?

A benefit of crowdfunding that we should look further especially on small businesses is the massive amount of money they receive. They can easily access funds in various ways on top of bank loan. Let’s face the fact that engaging in a startup is risky. Gathering enough funds while trying to validate yourself within the market without people who try to buy your company is hard.

Unlike with crowdfunding, the only thing you have to worry about is where and how to get funding. All this while getting market validation and keeping equity in your own startup.

Overcoming Failure when Starting a Business

The process of starting and launching a business is time-consuming, energy draining and downright stressful. However, if you do your due diligence and trust the process, you can eventually become successful.

If this is your very first time taking on this activity, then you might feel the sheer gravity of the entire operation. Let me help you to lighten the process by knowing couple of things when running a business.

Seek Mentorship

It will be highly recommended to look for someone who’ve been through the same process as what you are going through. See if they have free time to accommodate the questions you have. Well, this doesn’t indicate that you’ll heavily depend on everything they say.

The pieces of advice they gave you are wisdom.

Still at the end of the day, it is you who is going to make all the work and effort in figuring things on your own. Through this, it is going to help you navigate on bigger and more serious problems down the road.

Your mentor will also be there to assists you in technical aspects of getting financing, registering your business and everything in between. Depending on the state where you live, there are entrepreneurs and small business owners whom you can seek advice and get assistance to start a business.

Product Supplies

Among the best methods of finding good and quality products to sell is by attending tradeshows. Here, vendors are showing their best products and offerings that are in line with your business. Sitting down with some of the vendors let you establish professional relationship with them and acquire better pricing in the future.

Get Financing

This was actually one of the most difficult processes of launching a business. Yes, you might be able to plan everything, have a supplier for your products and everything in between. But let’s face it, what stops brilliant people is getting financing to launch their business. To be honest, opening a traditional business is something that requires big sum of money. However, if you don’t pass the requirements for financing and still want to pursue with your investments, you may try bitcoin trading bots online instead.

Cryptocurrency today is a hot topic and a valuable commodity. If you can tap into this market and use the bots to trade, you’ll probably make handsome profits in no time.

Want to Invest in a Business? Hire a Business Broker

At some point in time, companies and businesses change ownership. When this happened, it becomes a big help to contact a business broker. Their presence is going to be a great value both for the buyer and the seller. As for any aspiring entrepreneur, they ought to assess the targeted business establishment. This is basically where a business broker will come to place and be of remarkable assistance.

For the seller on the other hand, they’ll find it a rewarding and fruitful decision to use the services of such professional for selling their business. After all, these brokers have broad networks and can facilitate advertising and negotiation with prospective buyers.

How is it Beneficial to Hire a Business Broker?

Let’s face the fact that selling something is no easy process – unless you are a marketing guru that can sell virtually anything within hours. The same thing is true when planning to buy a house. You need to complete the requirements and have the funds to purchase your dream home. Fortunately, there’s a way now to make the process become easier and it’s by applying for mortgage loan with Lainaa.

Going back to selling a business, when you have a broker supporting you, they take away the tiresome and demanding process it takes. Face it. The entire transaction can take great amount of your time and it could even affect the overall value and worth of your business since you’re spending more time on selling it than on the day to day operations. This is basically where the services provided by a business broker become so handy.

Because You don’t want everyone else to Know

First things first, professional brokers guarantee confidentiality and at the same time, they assure that only prospective buyers whom you approved will be contacted.

Experienced and trustworthy brokers can literally save you a great amount of time in having to screen prospective and interested buyers ahead of time.

They Do all the Legwork

Apart from that, they can check if the prospect has strong financial resource to purchase your business and take over. They will be performing interviews on your prospects and inform them to sign a non-disclosure and confidentiality contract. If ever you try selling your business independently or openly, you will likely damage the moral of your staffs and also, give your competitors the chance to spread rumors that can damage your reputation and image.

This is one thing that you don’t want to happen. Rather than enduring all these things, hire a business broker instead.

There’s a Way to Get Funding for Your Small Business Investment

The SBIC or Small Business Investment Company program is a little less known program in SBA or Small Business Administration. But the benefit of utilizing this program is that, you can get financing for the small business idea that you are seeking such as Hustle Life.

SBIC is basically a private lending company that’s regulated and licensed.

The offered venture capital financing of SBIC is oftentimes to small businesses with higher risks while the SBIC loans are guaranteed by SBA.

Another benefit of SBIC for aspiring entrepreneurs is that, apart from funding of their small business and the creation of more jobs, SBIC is offering assistance and management expertise to companies.

Common Funding from SBIC

More often than not, the range of loan from SBIC is running from 250,000 to 10,000,000 dollars. The rate of interest on the other hand is about 9 to 16 percent. Some of the SBIC funding comes in form of equity or ownership in the business. SBIC also has the authority to decide to invest in a business of their interest in exchange for ownership share in the company. The common investment is ranging from 100,000 to 5,000,000 dollars.

An important thing that should be known about SBIC funding is the fact that it can potentially take control of your business. In exchange of giving small business money, it gives SBIC the power of having control of the business for the next 7 years. This level of authority may vary depending on the situation. Therefore, if you opt to continue filing an application to SBIC, make sure that you are asking the right questions such as how they would like to exercise their power over your business.

3-Step Plan to Start with SBIC

Now let us say that you are decided to push through, here are the things that you must do.

Step number 1. Search for potential investors. Try finding for SBICs to find investors whose goals are in line with your plans. You can narrow down your search by the state for a faster and easier search.

Step number 2. Set an appointment with an SBIC and show your proposed business plan.

Step number 3. Discuss your proposal for financing. Before doing so, get vital info on specific SBIC you wish to approach and prime your communication and connection with that particular company.

Understanding the Basic Foundation of Opening a Small Business

Opening a small business is something that requires your attention and pure commitment. There are enormous challenges and sacrifices that an entrepreneur may face from preparing their Tucson business taxes, having a business plan and everything in between. There’s actually an overwhelming percentage of small business owners (84% to be precise) who are willing to do everything all over again.

If you think that this is the high time to take the risks and start your own business, there are several key steps that must be done first. These tips that I am going to disclose would serve as a guide on how you can navigate through rough seas especially on the early stages of your business.

Tip number 1. Create an Impactful Message

There’s one thing that a business has to provide to its market. It’s none other than solutions to customer’s problems. These solutions are basically the things that people are willing to pay for their money. In the business world, this is referred to as value proposition.

Tip number 2. Concentrate on Clients and Understand Your Audience

There are plenty of good examples of companies that don’t have the best service and/or product and yet, have been enjoying roaring success for they’ve mastered their sales and marketing. Performing research on the psychographics and demographics of your market and assessing their buying habits can go a long way for your business.

It is strongly recommended to closely observe how your competitors talk with same businesses, browse their homepage and study what their clients say about them online especially in social media.

Tip number 3. It Always Starts in Humble Beginnings

Whenever possible, self-fund your business for few months. Root for funding only when you have created a growth story. This may possibly make you to break up your service/product offering to smaller pieces so by that, you will be able to fund the early phases of your business while getting valuable experience and at the same time, traction.

Tip number 4. Accept your Strengths, Weaknesses and Skills

It is integral to know when to talk to your insurance agent, lawyer, accountant, webpage designer, marketing specialist and any other professional who plays an important role in your business.

Tip number 5. Surround Yourself with Mentors and Advisors

If there’s one thing that you have to know about launching and growing an investment, things will be extremely difficult. You are more likely to fail within the first 60 months of its operation. This is normal. It’s the same reason why getting insights from mentors and advisors is crucial for they can give valuable information on how you can properly navigate through these challenges.

Basic Tips to Open a Business that Your Heart Wants

No two businesses are alike. Whether you like it or not, there’s no equal opportunity that you can have. Some may become successful in their startup business some might eventually fail. Some businesses are more suitable for others and some might be just perfect for you.

Discover the Right Investment is Suited for You

The question is how would you be able to find a business that falls into the latter?

It is hard and no one can predict the answer to this question. BUT… there’s a series of question that you can ask yourself which can help big time in narrowing which path to take.

By asking yourself the questions discussed below, you’ll end up in an investment that you are truly passionate about.

Question number 1. Does your heart and passion is in this business opportunity?

If your answer is 50-50, then there’s a possibility that your concentration might adrift as you progress day after day and look for something which really catches your interest. What’s more, there is a chance that you may never become successful with this enterprise that you are taking on.

Otherwise, if you have a firm YES as the answer, then go ahead. Start doing research and get funding for your business by any means whether via applying for payday loans online, going to banks or financial institution or whatever that can provide you with what you need.

Question number 2. Is this a viable business?

Is someone willing to fund you in exchange of the service or product for your planned business? Keep in mind that until you start selling something, it is not a business, but merely a hobby that’s costing you money.

If there are some others who have the same business idea as yours, then you may want to try visiting their store and be a help for few days. This way, you can have firsthand experience of how customers are reacting to the service or product.

Question number 3. What’s the competition be like?

You must never be fooled into believing that a business has no competition. Keep this in mind, every business, especially the most viable one always have competition in them. If you can’t find any of them, then you should look harder. In the event that you can’t still find any, then you better start to worry. It’s because a business without competition is considered to be a red flag.