content, news, Insights

Last Week in Tech - October 8, 2021

Susie Evershed

8 October, 2021

As we get set for the weekend here is our look back at the week that was. 

Did someone say data breach?

Anyone who started the week not knowing what Twitch was certainly does now as news of a massive data breach at the game-streaming platform dominated the news this week. The leak of sensitive data, which included internal code and payments made to streamers, was allegedly caused by a server configuration change that exposed the data. 

It’s always tempting to try to newsjack these kinds of incidents, but where details are hazy on the how’s and why’s any comment issued must add real insight and value to the situation. Sometimes the best thing is to take a step back and wait for events to unfold a little further before working out a response. But if you can then speed is of the essence! 

We forgot how to communicate – briefly 

Or was it just me? Confused by my sudden inability to communicate via WhatsApp this week I had to resort to SMS! Yes for 9 whole hours the world was without Facebook, WhatsApp and Insta…forcing many people to talk to each other in person.  

Joking aside it was a significant business issue, costing Facebook millions of dollars and a huge drop in share value for every hour it was down. 

What was interesting about this from a PR point of view was that it wasn’t just about the tech. Obviously having a single point of failure like this is one aspect. But beyond the impact on Facebook itself, businesses of all sizes across the world rely on these social media sites and marketing/ads were heavily impacted. Plus, all those influencers had no one to influence! 

It’s all about the money 

In the wake of the FCA’s successful prosecution of NatWest, serious questions are being asked of banks. The bank pleaded guilty to three breaches of anti-money laundering rules this week. 

This prosecution came at a time when many heads were still turned at the unveiling of the Pandora Papers in the first half of this week, and although this raised a huge number of systemic loopholes and problems, wasn’t revealing illegal activity. NatWest however, is facing a fine that will likely be in the region of £340m for activity which was clearly a violation of compliance regulation. 

The RegTech market is hot right now and this week’s news has brought it sharply into focus. There’s a big opportunity for smart comms in this area to lead the narrative and use the news agenda to build visibility.