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Servicers

BUSINESS
March 24, 2014 | By Tiffany Hsu and E. Scott Reckard
Increasing activity by data hackers has produced millions of victims and one clear winner: the credit monitoring business. Services with names such as BillGuard and Identity Guard report a surge in sign-ups from people anxious to be protected. Nervous consumers worry that the parade of data breaches involving credit card, debit card and other personal information could leave them vulnerable to fraud and identity theft. The latest incident was revealed Saturday when the California Department of Motor Vehicles said it was "alerted by law enforcement authorities to a potential security issue within its credit card processing services.
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BUSINESS
March 21, 2014 | By Jessica Guynn
SAN FRANCISCO -- Twitter is working to get its service back up and running in Turkey after Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan pulled the plug on the social network. “We stand with our users in Turkey who rely on Twitter as a vital communications platform,” Twitter's policy team said in a tweet on Friday. “We hope to have full access returned soon.” The ban was prompted by links posted to Twitter of audio clips that appeared to incriminate Erdogan in corruption ahead of local elections.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 18, 2014 | By Jeff Gottlieb
Crews worked Tuesday to fix a fingertip-sized hole in an underground pipe that allowed about 1,200 gallons of crude oil to seep onto a quiet residential street in Wilmington. Phillips 66, which earlier in the day said it was almost positive that it was not to blame for the leak, later took responsibility and put the blame on one of its out-of-service pipes. Don Ellis, a hazardous-materials specialist with the Los Angeles County Fire Department, said that when an underground oil pipeline is withdrawn from use, it is supposed to be capped and the material inside vacuumed out. Janet Grothe, a spokeswoman for Phillips 66, said the company would investigate why oil remained in the pipe, which she said was taken out of service before Phillips 66 acquired it. Los Angeles Councilman Joe Buscaino, who was touring the area, said the pipe had been withdrawn from service in 1998.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 17, 2014 | By David Zahniser and Emily Alpert Reyes
L.A.'s top budget official on Monday advised the city's elected leaders to resist the temptation to expand services, saying they should work toward eliminating a recurring deficit by 2018 instead. In a 37-page report, City Administrative Officer Miguel Santana said a rebounding economy and greater stability in the city's own finances have created new pressure to add or expand local government. He recommended that council members focus on other initiatives, such as reducing entry-level city salaries and securing new health-care concessions from the workforce.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 17, 2014 | By David Zahniser
Los Angeles' top budget official Monday advised city leaders to resist the temptation to expand services, saying they should work instead toward eliminating a recurring deficit by 2018. In a 37-page report, City Administrative Officer Miguel Santana said a rebounding economy and greater stability in the city's finances have created new pressure to add or expand local government. He recommended that council members focus on initiatives to stabilize the budget, such as reducing entry-level city salaries and securing new healthcare concessions from the workforce.
BUSINESS
March 17, 2014 | By Shan Li
Chesapeake Energy Corp. said it plans to spin off its oil field services division into a separate publicly traded company. The news came weeks after the the oil and natural gas producer said it was pursuing strategic alternatives for the division, including a possible sale. The Oklahoma City company, which is the second-largest producer of natural gas in the U.S., has been moving to cut costs after a year of upheaval that included the ouster of Chief Executive Aubrey McClendon.
BUSINESS
March 17, 2014 | By E. Scott Reckard
California victims of alleged foreclosure abuses will get $268 million in relief from a $2.1-billion national settlement with Ocwen Financial Corp., the nation's largest non-bank provider of mortgage customer service. Ocwen broke state law by improperly denying loan modifications, failing to honor modifications granted by prior servicers and charging unauthorized fees, according to the California Department of Business Oversight. "Californians should not lose their homes because of deceptive and poorly executed mortgage servicing practices," Commissioner of Business Oversight Jan Lynn Owen said Monday in a news release.
TRAVEL
March 15, 2014
I used the Bags VIP delivery service to pick up my checked luggage at the airport on a recent trip to New York. Although the clerk at JetBlue said he knew nothing about how to affix the green Bags VIP sticker, his supervisor did. The scene in New York City is such that my bag arrived at my hotel before I did. I wish it picked up luggage at home and not just at airports, but the service is reasonable, friendly and efficient. One bag, $29.95; two bags, $39.95; three-eight bags, $49.95.
BUSINESS
March 14, 2014 | By Marc Lifsher
SACRAMENTO - Ride-sharing company Uber is upping the ante in its drive to persuade government regulators that the public is protected when its drivers are between fares. Uber announced Friday that it was closing a so-called insurance gap in its service. The company has been insuring its drivers when carrying Uber passengers. Now it says it is providing contingency insurance that covers property damage and injuries caused by an Uber driver even when he or she is between fares.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 13, 2014 | By Dan Weikel
An airline services company at Los Angeles International Airport has won a court victory in a longstanding battle with a labor union fighting to regain its representation of the firm's workers. Aviation Safeguards announced Thursday that U.S. District Judge Stephen Wilson threw out a lawsuit filed in July 2012 by several company workers and United Service Workers West, a local of the Service Employees International Union. The case accused company managers of coercing their employees' choice of union representation before a majority of workers voted to terminate an SEIU contract in December 2011.
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