Wed, Apr 16, 2014 - Page 15 News List

World Business Quick Take



Mumsnet hit by ‘Heartbleed’

British parenting Web site Mumsnet is the latest organization to have been hacked due to the “Heartbleed” bug, founder Justine Roberts said on Monday. “Last week we became aware of the Heartbleed bug and immediately applied a fix to close the OpenSSL security hole,” she said in a statement. “However, it became apparent that users’ data submitted via our login page had been accessed prior to our applying this fix.” All 1.5 million registered users were asked to change their passwords. Roberts said she did not know how many users had data stolen. “The worst case scenario is that the data of every Mumsnet user account was accessed,” she said.


Pay cap for state-run firms

The government named four new directors to state-controlled companies on Monday, including three women, and capped executive pay at such firms at 238,000 euros (US$329,000) a year. The shake-up affects some of the country’s largest state-controlled companies: oil firm Eni, energy company Enel, industrial giant Finmeccanica and the postal service. Prime Minister Matteo Renzi has said he is looking to cut 500 million euros from executive salaries at state-run companies.


Interest rate hiked

The central bank increased its benchmark interest rate for the first time in eight months on Monday in a bid to defend its currency, which has lost almost two-fifths of its value since the start of the year due to the conflict with Russia. The bank hiked the benchmark rate to 9.5 percent from 6.5 percent in its first change since August last year. The rate change went into effect yesterday. The bank also raised its overnight loan rate to 14.5 percent from 7.5 percent.


Google buying dronemaker

Google on Monday announced that it is acquiring Titan Aerospace, a maker of solar-powered drones that could be used to boost Internet access to remote areas. Titan’s atmospheric satellites, which are still in development and not yet commercially available, can stay in the air for as long as five years, according to reports. “It’s still early days, but atmospheric satellites could help bring Internet access to millions of people, and help solve other problems, including disaster relief and environmental damage like deforestation,” a Google spokesman said in an e-mail. Financial terms of the transaction were not released.


Twitter bosses keep shares

Twitter cofounders Jack Dorsey and Evan Williams and chief executive Dick Costolo have no short-term plans to sell their shares in the social network, according to documents released on Monday. The news comes weeks ahead of the so-called lockup expiration on May 5, the date after which insiders would be allowed to sell holdings following Twitter’s initial public offering last year.


Nestle sales rise 4.2%

Food company Nestle SA says sales rose 4.2 percent in the first quarter despite deflationary price pressures in Europe. The Switzerland-based maker of Lean Cuisine, Nespresso and Haagen-Dazs yesterday said that sales of 20.8 billion Swiss francs (US$23.6 billion) were held back by a strong franc and by a flat retail environment in Europe. Sales there fell 0.8 percent. Candy sales were reduced by a later Easter, which pushed sales of sweets into the second quarter.

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