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Why Companies Often Get Lunar New Year Wrong In The Workplace

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Many Asian employees claim that their bosses lose sight of the nuances of Lunar New Year celebrations if they even acknowledge the occasion at all.

Aivee’s office was decked with Chinese lanterns to celebrate the Lunar New Year. The Sydney office of the global IT consulting firm where she worked as a lawyer also held a traditional lion dance and convened a panel discussion about Lunar New Year traditions that needed more diverse participation, except for one Chinese coworker.

However, Aivee, 32, a Malaysian, expressed dissatisfaction. The overall endeavour felt underwhelming, if not generic. She claims that little about the event planning felt inclusive or authentic. “I came in with the expectations of hearing more about Lunar New Year traditions of different Asian countries across the office.”

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Why Companies Often Get Lunar New Year Wrong In The Workplace

As workforces become increasingly varied, many organisations have included various multicultural celebrations, including heritage months and culturally specific holidays. According to McKinsey & Company research, organisations prioritising diversity are 35% more likely to outperform their peers financially. Deloitte data reveals that employees with a strong sense of belonging are more productive, quit companies less frequently, and take fewer sick days.

“It leads to higher employee engagement,” says Pin-ya Tseng, a senior consultant at Paradigm, a San Francisco-based diversity and inclusion firm. She claims that workplace multiculturalism, rather than disregarding or reducing group differences, causes employees to perceive their colleagues as less biased.

However, it can be difficult to approach cultural festivities delicately – getting the details right and hitting the proper touchpoints while remaining sensitive. Experts point to the Lunar New Year as an example of how businesses can make mistakes that leave employees like Aivee feeling as if their firms have only given them lip service – or have ignored them entirely.

“Organisations need to recognise that many of their employees observe Lunar New Year,” Tseng said. “It is estimated that around two billion people worldwide celebrate the holiday.”

Many people want to celebrate Lunar New Year at work, but it’s more than a party. Instead, it presents a chance to promote cultural understanding among leaders and colleagues. When businesses need to adequately stress the significance of the Spring Festival for the various cultures that celebrate it, some employees may feel misunderstood.

Happy Lunar New Year! All You Need to Know About The Year of the Tiger - V  Magazine

Why Companies Often Get Lunar New Year Wrong In The Workplace

Kelly, 22, originally from Hong Kong, says she was left “feeling different” at work because she had to convey the significance of the Lunar New Year in her London job. “The best time of the year” is how she describes it. Her colleagues, who primarily celebrated Western holidays, needed to understand the significance or rituals after the office’s tepid, drop-by celebration.

“It’s much more difficult for them to understand when I say I’m going home for the Lunar New Year. “I’m taking two weeks off, and it’s affecting my work,” she explains. It’s a departure from the typical practice of taking end-of-year vacations, and many of her coworkers couldn’t comprehend why she was taking the break in February. Employees may be responsible for explaining their cultural practices, which is both unpaid and emotionally taxing.

Even when business executives introduce programming, employees claim they frequently get it wrong.

“We’ve seen organisations make the mistake of neglecting to acknowledge the range of countries and communities that celebrate the Lunar New Year,” Tseng said. Some businesses refer to “Lunar New Year” as “Chinese New Year,” or, conversely, presume that some Asian cultures celebrate it when they do not. 

Khoi, a 23-year-old Vietnamese graduate of a big financial firm in London, is celebrating Tết. His workplace did recognise Lunar New Year but referred to it as “Lunar Chinese New Year”.

“Well, at least it’s better than just ‘Chinese New Year’,” Khoi remarks, reflecting on his prior employer’s complete lack of respect for the season. However, this “good enough” mindset can lead to workers like him accepting that firms will never get it right, lowering the bar for what they should expect from their employers. Experts argue that firms can accomplish it. Senior leaders’ active promotion of these projects is critical to their success. “If leaders aren’t visibly prioritising these events or programmes, others within the organisation won’t see them as important either,” Tseng said. “This means it will be hard to get engagement from those who may be helping create and run activities as well as those who would be participating.”

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Why Companies Often Get Lunar New Year Wrong In The Workplace

However, one of the underlying challenges with executive support is a widespread lack of Asian representation in senior roles, known as the “bamboo ceiling”. In 2023, research from the MIT Sloan School of Management in Massachusetts, US, revealed that East Asian workers – Chinese, Japanese, and Koreans – were perceived as less innovative, presenting a barrier to top positions. Organically growing Lunar New Year celebrations from the top is difficult when few Asians hold key positions.

Senior managers from various backgrounds can, however, use their roles to advance diversity efforts and make beneficial changes step by step, working closely with Asian colleagues at all levels of a business. Leaders from Asian backgrounds also believe that promoting Lunar New Year diversity pays off.

“As I’ve grown professionally, I’ve seen first-hand how important it can be for myself and other Asian colleagues to have a strong support network, from a community to celebrate our culture with many people without strong family connections in-country, to advice and career support as people progress and build their careers,” says Cassandra Yong, a Chinese-Malaysian partner at Boston Consulting Group in London, who founded and led its Asian Diversity Network at the firm.

“Our Asian community has grown significantly over the years, and it was important for me to ensure everyone is able to access a network like this.”

SOURCE – (BBC)

Kiara Grace is a staff writer at VORNews, a reputable online publication. Her writing focuses on technology trends, particularly in the realm of consumer electronics and software. With a keen eye for detail and a knack for breaking down complex topics, Kiara delivers insightful analyses that resonate with tech enthusiasts and casual readers alike. Her articles strike a balance between in-depth coverage and accessibility, making them a go-to resource for anyone seeking to stay informed about the latest innovations shaping our digital world.

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Google Is Close To Making Its Biggest Acquisition Ever

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Google's Latest Spam Update Met with Widespread Criticism Amidst a Year of Turbulent Changes

Alphabet, Google’s parent company, is in advanced talks to buy fast-growing cybersecurity startup Wiz for around $23 billion, a person familiar with the situation confirmed to CNN.

A takeover of Wiz, which provides cybersecurity software for cloud computing, would be Google’s largest cybersecurity acquisition to date.

According to the source, the talks between Google and Wiz began after the business raised $1 billion from venture capital investors earlier this year.

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Google | CNN

Google Is Close To Making Its Biggest Acquisition Ever

According to the source, the terms of a potential deal have not been completed, and negotiations may fail.

The Wall Street Journal was the first to report on the Wiz talks.

Neither Google nor Wiz responded to CNN’s requests for comment.

The transaction would likely beat Google’s $12.5 billion acquisition of Motorola almost a decade ago, the company’s largest buyout in history. Only two years later, Google sold Motorola for a huge loss.

Wiz’s $23 billion price tag roughly quadruples the startup’s $12 billion valuation from its most recent fundraising round.

In March 2022, Alphabet paid $5.4 billion to acquire cybersecurity firm Mandiant as part of its attempts to help businesses better confront cyber risks and grow its cloud computing business.

Cloud is critical to the company’s efforts to diversify revenue streams beyond its main search advertising business. Despite increased cloud revenues, it has yet to compete with similar services like Microsoft and Amazon.

Buying Wiz would be a “shot across the bow” at Microsoft and Amazon, demonstrating Google’s “major bet on the cyber security space to complement its flagship offering in the cloud,” Dan Ives, managing director and senior equity research analyst at Wedbush, wrote in a note to clients on Monday.

Cloud security has grown increasingly critical recently as businesses have extensively moved data to cloud systems. Last week, AT&T disclosed that virtually all of its wireless customers’ call and text records were compromised in a huge breach caused by an “illegal download” on a third-party cloud platform.

The Wiz acquisition talks came despite intensified antitrust investigation of internet titans by the Biden administration.

However, if Trump retakes the White House, that antitrust vigilance might be turned back slightly, Ives said, making the Federal Trade Commission “much weaker” and sparking an “accelerated merger and acquisition environment to take place for Big Tech.”

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Google | Wiki Image

Google Is Close To Making Its Biggest Acquisition Ever

If the acquisition is confirmed and completed, it will be a big departure for Wiz and its founders, Assaf Rappaport, Ami Luttwak, Yinon Costica, and Roy Reznik. The four executives first met when enlisted into Unit 8200, the Israel Defense Forces’ cyber intelligence branch.

In New York City, Wiz has experienced rapid development since its inception in March 2020, during the Covid-19 pandemic. Today, the organization claims that 40% of Fortune 100 corporations are its clientele.

Notable customers include BMW, Slack, and Salesforce, and it collaborates with major cloud providers such as Amazon, Microsoft, and Google.

SOURCE | CNN

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2024 | Hacker Group Claims It Leaked Internal Disney Slack Messages Over AI Concerns

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An activist hacker group claimed to have exposed hundreds of Disney’s internal message channels, including details on unreleased projects, raw photos, computer codes, and even logins.

Nullbulge, a “hacktivist group,” claimed responsibility for the breach and stated they exposed approximately 1.2 gigabytes of data from Slack, a communications platform. In an email to CNN on Monday, the group said it got access from “a man with Slack access who had cookies.” The email further stated the group was based in Russia.

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Disney | CNN Image

Hacker Group Claims It Leaked Internal Disney Slack Messages Over AI Concerns

According to the mail, “The user was aware we had them. He tried to kick us out once but let us walk right back in before the second time.”

CNN could not independently verify the claims.

In a statement issued Monday, Disney stated it “is investigating this matter.” the entertainment empire encompasses various divisions and enterprises, from ESPN to Hulu, Disney+ to ABC News.

The group also declared that it wishes to defend artists’ rights and pay for their work, particularly in the age of artificial intelligence.

“Disney was our target due to how it handles artist contracts, its approach to AI, and its pretty blatant disregard for the consumer,” the hacking group stated via email.

Nullbulge had hinted at the massive release on social media for several weeks. For example, in June, the organization released visitation, booking, and income data from Disneyland Paris on X.

Artificial intelligence was a major stumbling block in negotiations during the Screen Actors Guild and Writers Guild of America strikes. Writers are anxious that ChatGPT can produce screenplays in their place, while performers are concerned that computer-generated imagery, or CGI, would completely replace them.

The hackers claimed they leaked the material because making demands on Disney would be pointless.

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Disney | Wired Image

Hacker Group Claims It Leaked Internal Slack Messages Over AI Concerns

“If we announced, ‘Hello, we have all your Slack data,’ they would immediately shut down and attempt to take us out. “In a duel, you better fire first,” the email read.

In 2014, a massive cyberattack at Sony Pictures attributed to North Korea sparked an international crisis by disclosing emails from corporate officials, celebrity aliases, social security information, and full movie scripts.

SOURCE | AP

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Amazon Prime Day Is A Big Event For Scammers, Experts Warn

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NEW YORK — Amazon Prime Day is approaching, and experts warn customers to be aware of scammers.

Deceptions like fraudulent emails from people mimicking internet shops like Amazon are not new. However, the Better Business Bureau reports that phishing attempts rise around major sales periods such as Black Friday and Prime Day.

“This is a huge moment on the retail calendar,” Josh Planos, vice president of communications and public relations for the Better Business Bureau, told The Associated Press. “And because of that, it represents an enormous opportunity for a scammer, con artist or even just an unethical business or organization to capitalize on the moment and separate folks from their hard-earned money.”

Prime Day, a two-day discount event for Amazon Prime subscribers, begins on Tuesday and continues through Wednesday. The Better Business Bureau issued a revised caution last week, reminding customers to be wary of lookalike websites, too-good-to-be-true social media ads, and unwanted emails or calls during this month’s sales events.

Amazon Prime Day Is A Big Event For Scammers, Experts Warn

Consumers may need to be more attentive this year than any before. In June, the Better Business Bureau released a study stating that it received a record amount of phishing reports in 2023. Reports have also been rising upward this year, according to the organization.

Meanwhile, Check Point Software Technologies, an Israeli cybersecurity company, said this month that more than 1,230 new Amazon-related websites appeared in June. Check Point reported that most of them were malicious or appeared suspicious.

Scott Knapp, Amazon’s director of worldwide buyer risk prevention, notes two areas where the company has witnessed hoaxes during Prime Day in recent years: Prime membership and order confirmations.

According to Knapp’s emailed statement, more than two-thirds of scams reported by Amazon customers last year claimed to be connected to purchase or account concerns. Knapp explained that people reported receiving unsolicited calls or emails claiming there was a problem with their Prime subscription and requesting bank account or other payment details to reinstate the accounts.

He said that urging customers to confirm an order they did not place is another prevalent approach at this time of year. Scammers may use a costly item, such as a smartphone, to attract attention and request payment details or send a harmful link. They may also attempt to entice customers with promises of a gift or by employing language that generates a false feeling of urgency.

Amazon is working “to ensure scammers are not using our brand to take advantage of people who trust us,” Knapp wrote. The company’s app or website allows customers to authenticate their purchases and verify messages.

Additional scams are out there, but predicting what form they’ll take before this year’s Prime Day is difficult. However, experts observe that the same shopping frauds reemerge year after year.

“Typically, the bones remain the same,” Planos added, citing fake delivery scams, email phishing, and other common approaches. “It’s always a ploy to separate consumers from (their) personal and payment information.”

However, Planos and others caution that online hoaxes are continually changing and becoming more sophisticated. This implies that photographs appear more authentic, text messages sound more convincing, and fraudulent websites resemble reputable shopping places.

According to Amazon’s Knapp, with artificial intelligence “starting to leak in,” frauds targeting e-commerce buyers take the same strategy, but with a machine populating an email or text rather than a person.

According to Federal Trade Commission data, consumers reported losing around $10 billion to fraud in 2023, representing a 14% increase over 2022. According to the FTC, online shopping scams were the second most commonly reported type of fraud, trailing only impostor scams.

Throughout the year, the FTC and the Better Business Bureau educate customers with recommendations on how to prevent scams. The guidance includes rejecting unwanted communications, not exposing financial information to unsolicited callers, and double-checking URLs before clicking – secure websites, for example, will have “HTTPS” in the URL, not “HTTP.”

Scammers frequently encourage you to respond quickly, according to experts. It’s critical to pause and trust your instincts. Experts also encourage customers to report scams to regulators.

Aside from frauds that imitate firms or stores, be wary of counterfeit products and phony reviews on the websites of reputable retailers. Just because you are shopping on Amazon, for example, does not imply that you are purchasing from Amazon. Online shopping giants like eBay, Walmart, and others have extensive third-party markets.

Amazon Prime Day Is A Big Event For Scammers, Experts Warn

According to Planos, the quality and appearance of counterfeit products have improved dramatically in recent years, making the practice harder to control. A decent rule of thumb is to look at the price tag; if the product is sold for less than 75% of its annual market rate, “that’s a pretty big red flag,” he says.

Sketchy merchants can appear on many platforms, including sites like Amazon, “all the time,” according to Planos, who advises consumers to check out organizations on the Better Business Bureau website. Counterfeit products, like other scams, may become more prevalent during peak shopping seasons.

In recent years, Amazon has acknowledged getting rid of millions of fake products in response to mounting demand to combat counterfeit goods. The corporation also claimed to have prevented billions of fraudulent listings from appearing on its website. In 2023, Amazon stated that more than 7 million counterfeit items were “identified, seized, and appropriately disposed of.” The online shop has also launched many cases against fraudulent review brokers.

Amazon emphasizes that users can use its website to report fraudulent reviews and other scams. If a buyer purchases a counterfeit item found by the corporation, Amazon has stated that it will “proactively contact” the client and issue a refund.

SOURCE | AP

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