Apple Threatens Snitches; Another ICO Scam; WPP Head Exits
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And you thought the mob was full of Donnie Brascos. Apple is attempting to crack down on employees leaking confidential information to media outlets and the public. They aren’t off to a great start, as the information was passed to employees via internal communications … and promptly leaked to Bloomberg.
Tim Cook and Co. provided a not-so-subtle reminder to employees about the severity of the consequences of leaking information to external sources. Of the 29 employees fired for leaking proprietary information last year, 12 were arrested.
Stopping leaks at a company of Apple’s size can be difficult. While the company does employ forensic techniques to track documents with 135k employees globally it’s virtually impossible to monitor every employee who browns out on a Tinder date and tries to impress his or her suitor with their “insider information.”
Water Cooler Talking Point: “I think Tim Cook needs to start ruling that place with an iron fist if he wants to get anything done. Clearly, he’s never watched Game of Thrones or listened to even the most PG of gangster rap.”
TAKE THE MONEY AND RUN
Vietnamese cryptocurrency company Modern Tech just ghosted 32k people out of $660M via an elaborate ICO scam. That’s a lot of guac.
Modern Tech promised constant returns of 48% per month from their initial investment in Pincoin and a commission rate of 8% for every new member that they introduced to the network.
Investors were paid in cash until January when they started receiving their payments in another one of Modern Tech’s coins: iFan. But as the old saying goes: if it sounds too good to be true then it probably is … or at the very least it’s a Ponzi scheme.
It’s easy to see how so many people were bamboozled by Modern Tech. Their website and white papers had their “i’s” dotted and “t’s” crossed, and they even hosted several conferences in different cities around Vietnam to promote their products.
Water Cooler Talking Point: “It sucks that 32k people lost out on an average of $26k, but it is kind of funny reading about ‘a massive cryptocurrency fraud involving 15 trillion dong.’ That’s a lot of dong.”
YOU DOWN WITH WPP?
The times they are a-changin’ at WPP, the world’s largest advertising company. Sir Martin Sorrell, founder, and CEO will step down after 33 years at the helm of the Madison Avenue juggernaut.
Roberto Quarta, chairman of WPP’s board, will become interim CEO while HR pours over resumes, scouring for buzzwords like “media maven” and “knighthood.”
Channeling his inner Don Draper, Sorrel’s departure which is being labeled a “retirement” is tied to a probe into personal misconduct. The board was looking into whether Mr., er, Sir Sorrell “misused company assets.”
WPP, which owns more than 400 companies and employs 200k has had a rough go at is as of late. The company’s stock has plummeted over 30% in the last year as companies continue to bring ad services in-house. One of WPP’s biggest clients, P&G, plans to reduce ad spend by $400M over the next 3 years.
Water Cooler Talking Point: “Something smells fishy about this “retirement.” “Personal misconduct” sounds an awful lot like something that would require Sorrell to watch a really awkward HR-required 1990’s sexual harassment online training.”
IN OTHER NEWS
- Comcast plans to begin including Netflix in its cable bundles. This seems like exactly the opposite of what Comcast wants.
- Isaac Larian, CEO of the company behind Bratz and Little Tikes has made a $675M offer for most US Toy R Us stores. This seems entirely too much for a bankrupt company.
- JPMorgan Chase, Citigroup, and Wells Fargo topped earnings expectations on Friday but saw their shares drop during trading.
- Russia has blocked the secure messaging app Telegram after the company refused to provide encryption keys to a Russian security agency. In completely unrelated news the family of Telegram founder Pavel Durov has not been seen since Friday.
- Starbucks issued an apology following the arrest of two African American men in one of its Philadephia cafes on Thursday. As if Starbucks didn’t scream “white privilege” before.
- US indices were down Friday:
- DOW: -0.50%
- S&P 500: -0.29%
- NASDAQ: -0.47%
Why you should never, ever settle: You might not ‘deserve’ a job (or a raise, or a promotion) but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t get it. But don’t take our word for it: Kelly Perdew is a winner of the Apprentice, successful VC, West Point Grad … pretty much everything your parents wish you were.
If you’ve got a case of the Mondays: This Ted talk on the psychology of self-motivation oughta get you out of your funk. At the very least it will get you 15 minutes closer to the weekend.
When all else fails: Life is short, but if you need a daily reminder, there’s an app for that (well, technically a Chrome extension). Memento Mori is your daily reminder that time is precious.