Paul AinsworthPaul AinsworthAugust 8, 2019
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3min1302

British Airways is among firms taking part in a new initiative to boost productivity by having staff go on a week-long “workation” to Lithuania.

The Workstation Vilinius programme offers firms the chance to send staff to the Lithuanian capital to work, with the change in environment believed to stimulate employee engagement. The scheme reflects a rise in remote working that could see as much as 50 percent of the global workforce not tied to offices by 2020.

Three international companies – Monese, British Airways, and Siemens – won this year’s Workstation Vilinius places, and three teams of up to 10 employees from each firm will travel to Vilinius in September for a week of working against an inspiring new backdrop. They will be welcomed by Go Vilinius, the official development agency of the city.

Heroes and Vilnius: the Lithianian capital is hosting global employees for a week-long ‘workation’

General Manager of Go Vilnius, Inga Romanovskienė, said: “During the first Workation Vilnius programme that took place last year, we welcomed teams from British Telecom, Expedia, and OrderYoyo.

“By having such high-calibre applicants for the second year in a row, we believe that Vilnius is able to position itself amongst Europe’s top capitals for doing business. This is not only due to the international mindset which is adopted by our city’s business sector. It is also a result of our emphasis on the establishment of a healthy work-life balance for our professionals.”

A British Airways spokesperson said: “As a global organisation, we seek to enhance our cross-market working environments. Having the opportunity to work from Vilnius would strengthen our teams’ relationships and empower our employees.”


Paul AinsworthPaul AinsworthJuly 9, 2019
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3min962

Pan-European data protection cannot be “taken for granted” post-Brexit it has been warned, after British Airways was hit with a fine of £183 million following a cyber attack which affected half-a-million customers.

The record fine was imposed by the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO), and comes in the wake of customer data – including personal and financial information – being stolen from BA in 2018.

The hack saw data lifted from the airline’s website and mobile app through the use of a fake site, and initial estimates by BA that 380,000 payment cards were affected were proved wrong as the ICO highlighted 500,000 customers were placed at risk.

The £183 million fine – around 1.5% of BA’s global turnover for the financial year ending December 31 – is the largest ever imposed by the ICO, and has been put to the airline in an official Notice of Intention.

Following the ICO ruling, BA Chairman Alex Cruz said: “British Airways responded quickly to a criminal act to steal customers’ data. We have found no evidence of fraud/fraudulent activity on accounts linked to the theft. We apologise to our customers for any inconvenience this event caused.”

Meanwhile, the ruling has implications for data protection in the UK following the country’s proposed departure from the European Union on October 31, according to an expert in litigation and employment law.

Barrister Jonathan Compton, Partner at firm DMH Stallard, said: “BA will be able to make representations to the ICO, the Notice of Intention is not a final decision. In any event, whilst BA described the Notice as ‘disappointing’, the fact remains that if you are processing peoples’ personal data including credit cards, you must have the security measures in place to avoid a hack.

“What is interesting about this investigation is the increased co-operation between European Data protection agencies. In this case, the ICO was the lead investigator for concerns raised in other EU countries. Whether this co-operation will continue post Brexit is not a matter that can be taken for granted.”

 

 

 

 




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