Cyberattacks interrupt work at Toyota factories in Japan and other economic news

Cyberattacks interrupt work at Toyota factories in Japan

Toyota, the world’s largest automaker, said on Monday it had suspended all production in Japan after a possible cyberattack at a major supplier.

The shutdown follows a problem with the computer systems of Kojima Industries, an automotive component maker, which disrupted the company’s control systems. The problem first emerged on Saturday evening and the company decided to shut down its computer network to prevent the problem from spreading to customers, a company spokesperson said.

Kojima Industries has not yet been able to determine the cause of the problem, but it suspects a cyberattack or a virus. The company’s website remained unavailable Monday night.

In comments at a press conference on the situation in Ukraine, Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida said the government was aware of Toyota’s shutdown and was investigating the cause.

Cyberattacks have become increasingly common in Japan in recent years. Japanese companies have been slow to update their networks to account for the growing use of ransomware by criminals, as well as intrusions by state actors. Manufacturers have been the most common targets of attacks, which can essentially hold computer systems and valuable data hostage.

Russian ruble plummets as sanctions hit economy

Ordinary Russians face the prospect of higher prices as Western sanctions against invading Ukraine have sent the rouble plummeting. It has led to uneasy people queuing at banks and ATMs in a country that has seen more than one currency disaster in the post-Soviet era.

The Russian currency plunged around 30% against the US dollar after Western countries announced measures to block some Russian banks from the international payment system SWIFT and to restrict Russia’s use of its huge foreign currency reserves. foreign. The exchange rate then regained ground after swift action by the Russian central bank.

Shell to withdraw from Russian energy

Shell says it is pulling out of Russia as President Vladimir Putin’s invasion of Ukraine continues to cost foreign investment and the expertise of the country’s all-important energy industry.

The company on Monday announced its intention to withdraw from joint ventures with Russian energy giant Gazprom and related entities. This includes stakes in a key liquefied natural gas project and two oilfield development projects in Siberia. Shell also intends to end its involvement in the now discontinued Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline.

BP announced on Sunday its intention to get rid of a nearly 20% stake in Russian-controlled Rosneft. Norway’s Equinor said on Monday it would stop all new investment in Russia and start selling stakes there.

Study says smoking ban cuts 2,500 casino jobs

Amid a new push to ban smoking in Atlantic City casinos, a new report released Wednesday predicts it could cost up to 2,500 casino jobs and nearly 11% of casino revenue as they are struggling to recover from the coronavirus pandemic.

Independent gambling research firm Spectrum Gaming Group compiled the report which backs up the casinos’ longstanding claim that eliminating smoking would hurt their business, rob New Jersey of tax revenue and put thousands of unemployed people.

A group of casino workers and smoking opponents criticized the report, saying it prioritized profits over the health of employees and customers. They also said it did not consider what would happen in subsequent years as customers grew accustomed to a smoking ban, citing the experience of some tribal casinos where it bounced.

The New Jersey Casino Association commissioned the report, which did not recommend whether or not to ban smoking, an option that is gaining renewed support in the state legislature. New Jersey Democratic Gov. Phil Murphy said he would sign a smoking ban if a bill passes.

— Compiled by Dave Flessner

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