News Briefs


Survey: 42% of IT Leaders Told to Keep Data Breaches Confidential

atlas vpn bar graph

Data breaches can seriously threaten businesses, resulting in significant financial losses, legal ramifications, and reputational damage.

According to the data presented by the Atlas VPN team, 42% of IT leaders have been told to keep a data breach confidential. Furthermore, more than half of businesses admitted to experiencing a data breach in the last 12 months.

Nearly 30% of IT professionals had kept data breach a secret when they knew it should be reported. While these people should know better, they decided to side with the hackers and keep their crimes silent. In addition, customers whose information was stolen are also unaware that their data are in criminals’ hands.

When looking at the results by country, US businesses were the least responsible when dealing with data breaches. Over 70% of IT leaders were told to keep a data breach confidential, while 55% kept data theft a secret when they knew it should be reported.

Companies in Germany were the most responsible when dealing with data breaches. Of the IT leaders surveyed, 35% were advised to maintain confidentiality regarding a data breach, but only 15% kept it quiet. Furthermore, 54% neither were told nor kept a breach confidential.

​​Cybersecurity writer at Atlas VPN, Vilius Kardelis, shares his thoughts on data breach management:

“In an age where data breaches have become a grim reality, such practice undermines the fundamental principles of transparency, accountability, and proactive risk mitigation. Organizations must recognize that concealing data breaches erodes customers' trust and hinders the collective effort required to combat cyber threats.”

US businesses in trouble

To stay ahead in the face of technological advancements, businesses must recognize the gravity of the situation and adjust their security measures accordingly.

Overall 52% of companies have experienced a data breach in the last 12 months. However, when we take a closer look at country statistics, one of them stands out among the others.

About 3 out of 4 IT leaders in the US admitted that their company suffered a data breach in the last 12 months. This statistic seems even worse when combined with the fact that 55% of professionals stayed silent about data breaches. In the US, if the data breach affects more than 500 people, it is legally required to report it in 10 business days.

Meanwhile, 51% of businesses in the UK experienced a data breach in the last year. IT leaders working in Germany and Italy disclosed that nearly 50% of their businesses suffered a data incident. Data breaches also affected 44% of companies in Spain, while French businesses were the least likely to suffer such incidents, with only 42% experiencing data thefts.

To read the second part and the full article, head over to:


The Sandbox and Cipriani partner to Celebrate Timeless Italian Luxury Experiences in the Metaverse

illustration of metaverse version of reality at Harry's Bar

The Sandbox, a decentralized gaming virtual world and a subsidiary of Animoca Brands, announced a partnership with world-renowned hospitality company Cipriani to bring iconic Italian lifestyle and elegance to the metaverse.

The experience will allow players to walk the streets of Venice and discover the original Bellini, meet the Cipriani family, and take part in a relaxing and invigorating metaverse experience. The landmark Cipriani Wall Street Ballroom will also be recreated to host a masquerade ball, fashion shows, concerts, and other cultural events.

“We’re delighted to bring iconic Italian history into The Sandbox to further enrichen our players’ experiences,” said Sebastien Borget, COO and Co-Founder of The Sandbox. “In designing a metaverse for a such a diverse audience, we have the unique opportunity to represent nationalities and cultures from around the world, enabling us to connect with our players at a deeper level than traditional games.”

The Masquerade will be among the first events hosted on Cipriani’s LAND, where visitors will have a chance to  dance and listen to great music, all while hidden behind amazing masks. It will be a place to meet new people and learn about the experiences that Cipriani provides.

Cipriani’s LAND will be located in the trendy new Galleria neighborhood in The Sandbox. Launched on 1 December, 2022 at 3pm UTC, this neighborhood is built around fashion, media, and hospitality brands. Its upscale sense of style makes it the perfect place to host memorable Cipriani experiences.  

Players exploring Venice will be welcomed with a splash of time travel upon arriving at Harry’s Bar, the legendary 1930’s bar known for being a beloved place of gathering where writers, painters, artists, aristocrats, and royalty would meet to enjoy good company and drink a famous Bellini cocktail. The bar recently celebrated its 92nd anniversary on May 13th and will be featured in a new playable experience and accompanying NFT drop.


Hotel Effectiveness by Actabl Launches ShiftSwap Feature to Streamline Employee Schedule Management

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Actabl, the hospitality software company that enables hotels to drive profit through actionable insights, is pleased to announce the launch of its all-new ShiftSwap feature for Hotel Effectiveness. Designed to improve the ongoing challenge of shift coverage, ShiftSwap allows hotel team members to view each other’s published schedules and offer to swap shifts with another employee. ShiftSwap provides a host of benefits to hotel Scheduling Managers (such as the General Manager, Assistant General Manager or Department Managers) and Hotel team members, including:

  • Easy-to-use mobile capabilities 

  • Automatic updates to employee schedules and the hotel master schedule in Hotel Effectiveness

  • Option to require manager approval before a swap or offer of a shift can be finalized

  • Insights to potential changes to employee total hours for the week, including overtime risk

  • Digital log of any requested swap or offer, along with the outcome

ShiftSwap was developed in response to the ongoing coverage crisis of increased labor demand, limited labor pools, and fluctuating staff availability, making it nearly impossible for managers to maintain proper staffing levels. This feature is part of Hotel Effectiveness' larger suite of labor management software solutions designed to help hotels optimize costs, leverage contract labor, streamline operations, and improve guest satisfaction.

"ShiftSwap solves fluctuation issues between the availability of hotel team members. It gives autonomy to the associates to manage their schedules and helps take the pressure off their managers,” said Edie Lowe, Vice President of Strategic Accounts at Actabl. “With our first outreaches of this campaign, we've seen the food and beverage staff benefiting the most, particularly where hotels have trouble staffing for food and beverage service for onsite restaurants.”

With the introduction of ShiftSwap, employees can now view their shifts and the entire team's schedule. Based on hotel settings, employees can filter between all departments and positions, just their department or their position(s). Managers save time by having a system in place that is programmed to understand scheduling, wage data, and overall strategy.


“Since beginning our partnering with Actabl, we have proudly used Hotel Effectiveness’ labor management products to tackle today’s challenging labor conditions,” shared Adam Dwelley, Food & Beverage Manager at The Ben West Palm. “The latest feature, ShiftSwap, goes above the other scheduling options out there. Built into an easy-to-use app, it negates the “mad dash” to pick up shifts that may cause shift swap deals to fall through. All in all it’s a great feature that contributes to the success of our managers, associates and hotel.”


Waterville Valley Resort Partners With Thynk

Thynk and Waterville Valley Resort Team members

Waterville Valley Resort has selected Thynk.Cloud to help them elevate their historical brand experience, automate and simplify the work of their employees and deliver continued innovation by embracing true business agility. 

Waterville Valley Ski Resort, an independent resort nestled in the white mountains of New Hampshire, was established 57 years ago as one of the first resorts with a self-contained village designed as a four-season resort. This resort has continued to thrive as an early adopter of new technology by bringing innovation from all over the world to North America. Their 10-year development plan set in 2020 is just one of the ways they are committed to innovation and growth all focused on the guest experience and family vacation experience.

In December 2022, they installed a United States first with the fastest chairlift in New Hampshire, built by MND Group based in France, demonstrating Waterville’s investment to be first and a true leader in moving the industry forward. 

“We are excited to roll Thynk out to our first customer in the U.S. and help them create a seamless experience for their customers and achieve great efficiencies across their team,” said Thynk CXO Melissa Jurkoic. “Having visibility into customer data, consolidated communication and streamlined operations is something that every hospitality team needs in their arsenal to deliver the highest customer service and to remain competitive.”

“It was a long journey reviewing potential solutions and trying to find one that would align with our goals.”, said Abby Guinan, Director of Sales & Leasing, Waterville Valley. “I knew we made the right decision from the start with Thynk, everything from the task-oriented onboarding process to the support from the team has been incredible and far less overwhelming than expected with a new system rollout.  I have no doubt that Thynk is exactly what we need to succeed and grow!”

Thynk.Cloud helps the hospitality industry build stronger digital relationships with their customers, increase their focus on margins, optimize their cost of sales and operations, and uncover new sources of business.

“We’re only 3 years into our 10-year plan and we have made huge advancements and continued investments in transitioning to the next level. For us, it’s all about the next customer and developing a great progression scenario for them to grow as individuals. We’re known as New Hampshire’s family resort and we are always looking for ways to elevate the customer experience.”, Tim Smith President & General Manager, Waterville Valley. “We know that the right technology can enable us to reach those goals here at Waterville Valley Resort. Thynk’s hospitality sales & operations system represents the best technology in the market today and we are pleased to solidify our partnership with Thynk.Cloud.”

Melissa Jurkoic, CXO at Thynk.Cloud added “We are delighted to announce this first win in the US, which represents further evidence of the opportunity for us to grow outside of EMEA.”  


NRA 2023 NEWS: Kraft Heinz Unveils HEINZ REMIX, a Customizable Digital Sauce Dispenser

kraft heinz remix

The Kraft Heinz Company (“Kraft Heinz” or the “Company”) unveiled HEINZ REMIX™, the first customizable and IoT-enabled digital sauce dispenser to launch that allows consumers to personalize their own flavor creations. Developed in record speed – 6 months from initial brief to the physical product – with over 200 potential sauce combinations, HEINZ REMIX is the latest innovation from the Company’s foodservice or “Away From Home” (AFH) division, which is a key growth platform as outlined in the Company’s long-term strategy.

HEINZ® is no stranger to unique sauce combinations that satisfy fans’ cravings & needs (hello, MAYOCHUP®!). Now, HEINZ REMIX is taking personalized sauces to new heights, creating a first for the sauce and foodservice category. The free-standing machine is touchscreen operated, enabling consumers to first select from a range of “bases” – currently HEINZ Ketchup, Ranch, 57® Sauce, and BBQ Sauce – then personalize further with one or more “enhancers” – currently Jalapeño, Smoky Chipotle, Buffalo, and Mango – at their preferred intensity level (low, medium, high).

“As a company, we’re transforming through innovation by making bigger, more intentional bets to fuel our growth and create new experiences for consumers,” said Alan Kleinerman, Vice President of Disruption, Kraft Heinz. “HEINZ REMIX is a great example of this consumer-first approach to innovation. We’re changing the game for foodservice operators and sauce lovers - dipping will never be the same. With HEINZ REMIX, it’s more than a sauce dispenser; it’s an insights engine and business model enabler that will help Kraft Heinz understand and respond to consumer trends and flavor preferences in real-time. Who knows – maybe our next new sauce combination will come from a superfan using HEINZ REMIX!”

Kraft Heinz will debut HEINZ REMIX at the 2023 National Restaurant Association Show in Chicago (May 20-23, 2023), with plans to pilot the innovation with restaurant operators in late 2023 to early 2024.

“The launch of HEINZ REMIX is a first for the sauce category and foodservice industry,” said Peter Hall, President, U.S. Away from Home, Kraft Heinz. “It’s a great example of how we’re leveraging culinary insights and category knowledge to drive greater value for our customers and consumers. Our ambition is to be the leader for taste, flavor and experience anywhere you’re eating, and we’re delivering on that goal with category leading innovations like HEINZ REMIX.”

As Kraft Heinz continues on its journey to lead the future of food, the Company is focused on creative disruption across the entire organization, breaking down siloes to cultivate collaboration, reimagine product development, and utilize digital capabilities to accelerate the pace of innovation.


Elavon Partners with The Digital Line (TDL) to Launch New Range of Digital Services in Hospitality Industry

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Global payments provider Elavon has partnered with The Digital Line (TDL) on a voice-activated solution for the hospitality industry. The solution – Audico – utilizes the Amazon Alexa device to deliver a variety of voice-driven services. Elavon is the exclusive payments provider for the Audico solution in hospitality, globally.

Hemlata Narasimhan, Elavon Merchant Services President in Europe, says, “Virtual assistant technology is the future of hospitality, and we’re thrilled to be powering the payments behind Audico. This is all about improving the customer experience, and a large part of this is seamless payments. We’re pleased to be partnering with Amazon’s approved partner The Digital Line to make this happen.”

Audico is unique in the UK market, and has already been implemented at the world-famous Ascot Racecourse in Southeast England, where premium customers can call for betting services, order food and drinks, and purchase merchandise from their private boxes all with a few simple words to Alexa. The audible command is then relayed to staff as a Card Not Present transaction, and payment is made using a pre-determined account preference such as a credit card.

Audico is also being explored as a room service solution in hotels, and in premium hospitality areas at other venues and stadiums, as well as providing a landmark series of services in the health care industry.

George Vaughan, The Digital Line’s CEO, says, “This partnership represents a unique opportunity for two recognized brands to collaborate on initiatives that will revolutionize multiple business verticals, including hospitality, venues and health care, delivering a level of digital transformation not seen before.”