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Each week, we break down international news into our four quadrants of risk and present ways to mitigate those risks. 

Hazard and Event Risks

The Supreme Court of Thailand has convicted former Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawattra for negligence in a rice subsidy program; she has been sentenced in absentia to five years in prison. - The Brazilian Army has deployed 950 soldiers in Rio de Janeiro’s Rocinho favela (slum) to counter growing violence there. According to reports issued by Chilean authorities, at least two Catholic and two Evangelical churches were allegedly torched by a group of Mapuche indigenous people in the southern region of Araucania on September 20, 2017. Per media reports, increased weather changes pose a threat of zika, dengue, and chikungunya viruses spreading further in sub-Saharan Africa.

Technology and Information Risks

Singapore has been ranked the highest in launching global cyber-attacks according to a study released last week by data security firm Check Point Software. Per reports, a vulnerability has been found in  the latest Mac Operating System (MacOS). The McAfee Labs Threats Report released on September 26 revealed that most cyber-attacks are targeted at the healthcare sector and social media users.

Operational and Physical Risks

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has filed suit against New York City-based utility company Con Ed for requiring applicants to provide family medical information and submit to pre-employment medical exams. Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe last week dissolved the House of Representatives, the lower chamber of the National Diet, when the house reconvened after a three-month summer recess. On October 18, 2017, the Communist Party of China is scheduled to hold the 19th National Congress in Beijing, in which party delegates will be electing a new leader for the party. - Demonstrations against alleged government corruption under Jacob Zuma’s presidency took place in major South African cities recently.

Market and Economic Risks

Volkswagen has asked cobalt producers to submit proposals by September-end for supplying the element for up to ten years from 2019. Cobalt is an essential component of rechargeable batteries used in electric cars. According to several economic analysts, the recent earthquakes that struck central and southern Mexican states, including Mexico City, could impact the national economy in the near to medium term. 

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