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China’s Sinovac coronavirus vaccine candidate appears safe, slightly weaker in elderly

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FILE PHOTO: A staff member places a coronavirus vaccine candidate from Sinovac Biotech Ltd at its booth for display during the 2020 China International Fair for Trade in Services (CIFTIS), following the COVID-19 outbreak, in Beijing, China September 5, 2020. REUTERS/Tingshu Wang

BEIJING (Reuters) – Chinese firm Sinovac Biotech Ltd (SVA.O) said on Monday its coronavirus vaccine candidate appeared to be safe for older people, according to preliminary results from an early to mid-stage trial, while the immune responses triggered by the vaccine were slightly weaker than younger adults.

Health officials have been concerned about whether experimental vaccines could safely protect the elderly, whose immune systems usually react less robustly to vaccines, against the virus that has led to nearly 890,000 deaths worldwide.

Sinovac’s candidate CoronaVac did not cause severe side effects in a combined Phase 1 and Phase 2 trials launched in May involving 421 participants aged at least 60, Liu Peicheng, Sinovac’s media representative, told Reuters. The complete results have not been published and were not made available to Reuters.

Four of the world’s eight vaccines that are in the third phase of trials are from China.

For three groups of participants who respectively took two shots of low, medium and high-dose CoronaVac, over 90% of them experienced significant increase in antibody levels, while the levels were slightly lower than those seen in younger subjects but in line with expectation, Liu said in a statement.

CoronaVac, being tested in Brazil and Indonesia in the final-stage human trials to evaluate whether it is effective and safe enough to obtain regulatory approvals for mass use, has already been given to tens of thousands of people, including about 90% of Sinovac employees and their families, as part of China’s emergency inoculation scheme to protect people facing high infection risk.

The potential vaccine could remain stable for up to three years in storage, Liu said, which might offer Sinovac some advantage in vaccine distribution to regions where cold-chain storage is not an option.

Such estimation is extrapolated from the fact that vaccines readings stayed within acceptable ranges for 42 days at 25 Celsius (77 Fahrenheit), 28 days at 37C (98.6 F), and five months for 2-8C (35.6-46.4 F), Liu said, without disclosing complete data.

Reporting by Roxanne Liu and Tony Munroe; Editing by Lisa Shumaker

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COVID 19: Here's the list of Ottawa-area pharmacies that will offer free testing for asymptomatic people – Ottawa Citizen

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The Ontario government announced Wednesday it would expand COVID-19 testing to pharmacies, with as many as 60 pharmacies set to offer free testing to asymptomatic people beginning Friday.

Here are the 13 pharmacies in the Ottawa area that will offer testing by appointment to asymptomatic patients.

Shoppers Drug Mart pharmacies at:

1180 Walkley Road, Ottawa, ON, K1V 2M5, (613) 737-3344, https://stores.shoppersdrugmart.ca/en/store/620/

647 Earl Armstrong Road, Ottawa, ON, K1V 2G2, (613) 822-6746, https://stores.shoppersdrugmart.ca/en/store/1161/

455 Bank Street, Ottawa, ON, K2P 1Y9, (613) 238-9041, https://stores.shoppersdrugmart.ca/en/store/1428/

541 Montreal Road, Ottawa, ON, K1K 0V1, (613) 740-0616, https://stores.shoppersdrugmart.ca/en/store/641/

3940 Innes Road, Orléans, ON, K1W 1K9, (613) 834-7383,https://stores.shoppersdrugmart.ca/en/store/1139/

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Shopify fires two 'rogue' employees following data breach – CTV News

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OTTAWA —
Shopify Inc. says it has notified Canada’s privacy commissioner about a recent data breach it says was carried out by two “rogue” employees.

“In accordance with Canadian law, we promptly notified all affected merchants,” a spokeswoman for the company wrote in an email.

“We have subsequently provided information regarding the incident to the Office of the Privacy Commissioner.”

Earlier Wednesday, the commissioner’s office said it hadn’t yet received a report about the breach.

“Our office is reaching out to Shopify, given the potential seriousness of the breach, to request more information about the matter,” Vito Pilieci, a senior communications adviser wrote in an email.

Under the Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act, it is mandatory for companies to report breaches to the privacy commissioner’s office, “where it is reasonable to believe that the breach creates a real risk of significant harm to an individual,” Pilieci said.

Shopify spokeswoman Rebecca Feigelsohn said the two employees involved in the breach were fired.

On Tuesday, the Ottawa-based company first revealed on an online discussion board that it had identified two workers involved in illegitimately obtaining records connected to some of its merchants.

“We immediately terminated these individuals’ access to our Shopify network and referred the incident to law enforcement. We are currently working with the FBI and other international agencies in their investigation of these criminal acts,” the company said.

“While we do not have evidence of the data being utilized, we are in the early stages of the investigation and will be updating affected merchants as relevant.”

The customer data the employees were accessing was linked to fewer than 200 merchants, who Shopify has declined to identify but says have been notified.

The improperly accessed data includes basic contact information such as emails, names and addresses, as well as order details, such as what products and services were purchased.

Shopify said complete payment card numbers and other sensitive personal or financial information were not part of the breach and it has yet to find evidence that any of the data was used.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published September 23, 2020.

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Shopify says two support staff stole customer data from sellers – TechCrunch

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Shopify has confirmed a data breach, in which two “rogue members” of its support team stole customer data from at least 100 merchants.

In a blog post, the online shopping site said that its investigation so far showed that the two employees, who have since been fired, were “engaged in a scheme to obtain customer transactional records of certain merchants.”

Shopify said it had referred the matter to the FBI.

The employees allegedly stole customer data, including names, postal addresses and order details, from “less than 200 merchants,” but financial data was unaffected.

Shopify said that it does not have any evidence to suggest that the data was used, but that it had notified affected merchants of the incident.

One merchant shared with TechCrunch a copy of Shopify’s email notification, which said the company first became aware of the breach on September 15, and that the two employees obtained data that was accessible using Shopify’s Orders API, which lets merchants process orders on behalf of their customers. The email also said that the last four digits of the customers’ payment card was taken in the incident.

Shopify did not say how many end customers were affected by the theft of data from merchants, but the email sent by Shopify contained the specific number of customer records taken in the breach. In this merchant’s case, more than 1.3 million customer records; over 4,900 were accessed.

A spokesperson for Shopify didn’t respond to a request for comment.

Just last month, Instacart admitted two of its third-party support staff improperly accessed the information for shoppers who deliver grocery orders to customers.

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