HSBC “Rgerts to Onform”

I’m always amazed at how much money companies sink into sparkling advertising and PR, but so little into ensuring the emails their staff send and receive reflect the same sheen. Especially when they call themselves the “world’s local bank”. Take this recent email exchange with HSBC. I’m a customer, and sometimes use their Premier lounge …

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The Lost World of Yahoo

This piece was written for a commentary on the BBC World Service Business Daily about Jerry Yang’s decision to resign as CEO. Back in the early days of the World Wide Web there was really only one name. Yahoo. You could tell it was big because it was what you’d type in your browser to …

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The Financial Crisis in Charts

Thought I’d offer a brief history of the financial crisis as seen through Google Insights, which measures the popularity of a search term over time. Interest in the word subprime spiked a couple of times in 2007 (above) before we figured out it was all about toxic debts (below): and credit crunches: Then we realised …

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The Financial Crisis in Charts

Thought I’d offer a brief history of the financial crisis as seen through Google Insights, which measures the popularity of a search term over time. Interest in the word subprime spiked a couple of times in 2007 (above) before we figured out it was all about toxic debts (below): and credit crunches: Then we realised …

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Poffertjes and Power

Continuing my search for a place to plug in and work at airports, I was pleasantly surprised to find that HSBC has laid out the red carpet for its Premier account holders, at least at Jakarta’s Soekarno-Hatta Airport. If you have one of their fancy accounts, anywhere in the world, you and your partner can …

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Goertzel, Rugby and the Sweet-talking Scam

The South China Morning Post reports (I’ve got the hard copy here; everything there is behind a subscription wall, so no full link I’m afraid) of a clever scam where the bad guys steal just enough stuff — cards + identity — from a victim to be able to social engineer their way into trust, …

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Pumping Stock, Spam and the Criminal Underworld

If you ever feel the urge to trade on a spam stock tip, I offer this unsolved whodunnit as a cautionary tale. If you’ve been getting an extra dumpster of spam in your inbox lately, it’s probably because of a little known company called Cana Petroleum. If you open the email in question (and I’ve …

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Elitism’s Big Security Hole

You would expect that if you choose an elite, premium product or service that it was more secure than its lesser, bog standard one. But after an incident today I’m not so sure. I happen to have a fancy premium account at my bank. I didn’t really want it, and object to such things on …

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