7 Tips to Protect Your Business from International Shipping Scams

The business of shipping goods and products from organizations to their destination points has been steadily growing over the years with international shipping becoming more complicated by the day. And that is the reason why freight forwarders and Canadian trucking companies exist ; to help cover all the international shipping details of your items so that you can focus more on your business even as your goods are in transit.

Unfortunately, sometimes you find that some shippers rush into transactions with fishy shipping companies and end up getting scammed.

Yes, even business shipping has scam artists lurking about. Take, for example, the Medrano Express where a lot of shippers ended up being scammed when the company ended up filing for bankruptcy with many shipments and orders yet to be fulfilled. Who knows if those shippers will ever get compensated for all the products they lost?

This article aims to teach you on some of the best processes and ways you can ensure you don’t get scammed even as you prepare to ship your products internationally.

1. Google the company

A quick search on the company you are about to hire to transit your goods can say a lot about the company. Search for the details of the company online; on Google, Yahoo, Bing, or any other reputable online search engine. Look at their reputation. There may not be many scam freight forwarders or shipping companies out there but failing to do adequate research on the one you want to use may end you up in hot soup.

2. Check the comments and reviews

One very great thing that the internet comes with is that people now have space where they can share their experiences with different products and services. Check for the shipping company’s comments and reviews and look at how other customers and users view their services. People will never fail to warn others about a bad or scam company especially after they have had a bad experience with it.

3. Check the BBB rating of the company

These ratings go from A to F+. Not all businesses go through the BBB rating though. So, you can’t rely much on it. Though it can tell you a lot about the shipping companies that use it. Shipping companies with good BBB ratings are the best and safest for shipping your cargo. Medrano Express had a BBB rating of F. a clear sign to stay away.

4. Don’t decide using the freight rates

Never use the freight rates your number one priority when looking to hire a shipping company to ship your goods. Instead, consider other important factors like the customer service and experience. Good services will ensure your goods reach their destination. Remember, cheap is expensive.

5. How long has the shipping company been in business?

This point usually points out to all reputable businesses. It’s a fact that the businesses that have been in business a lot longer are more reliable, trustworthy and reputable compared to the newer fresher ones. Being a freight forwarder is not as hard, but being a good freight forwarder takes a lot of time and experience which the newer freight forwarders in the industry may not entirely have.

  1. Check the shipping company’s references

Ensure to check the shipping company’s references before you hire them. Never take their word for it. If a shipping company can’t provide you with its references, then look somewhere else. Only work with a shipping company that has a track record of good customer service.

  1. Make sure the agent handling your shipments is actually employed by the company.

Yes! This can also be an issue in the shipping business where you don’t look into who you are giving entitlement to handle your goods during shipment only to realize that he/she “played” you and disappeared with your products. Ensure you only work with legit agents of the company you are hiring to handle your shipments.

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Top 5 Factors to Consider Before Choosing a Logistic Company

The struggle is real, and you know it. Shipping goods from A to B is not only about managing supply chain and logistics, which are already complicated enough with warehousing, transportation, and distribution to consider. It’s also about other things such as regulations, licenses, truckers, taxes, and unexpected shipping costs.

That is why you have shipping companies. A logistic company will handle the whole shipping process and lets you get back to your business.

But selecting the right logistics services provider can be a tough experience for every company. With 42% retailers in North America implemented shipping options include ship anywhere and ship from distribution centers, you would need a provider that you can rely on to deliver your goods on time and in good condition, while still offers an affordable price, to help you compete against others.

There are many choices out there, but before putting your company’s reputation and success in the hand of any logistic companies, here are 5 elements to consider.

1. Quality

In logistics, the focus often is on price and not on quality. But think about your customers. They want their orders to be delivered on time and in good condition. There is no good lowering the cost as much as possible – what if that means late delivery or lost/damaged goods? Every order that arrives late or broken adds hours extra work to your plate and takes away revenue. Don’t forget that your customers or business partners don’t judge you only based on your services, but the reputation of the shipping company is attached to yours as well.

2. Reputation

In a new business arrangement, it’s always safer to put your trust in a reputable company. How many clients have they served? What type of reviews do they have online? If your chosen shipping company is a new one, consider their confidence – do they offer a money back guarantee in event of service failure?

3. Capability

Logistics is not a “one size fits all” industry. Courier services vary extensively, so you need to identify your requirements and think of all possible scenarios. Do you need an “on-time guaranteed” service or you are fine with a regular shipping service? Are storage facilities necessary? Can the company accommodate the shipping of items of the different type of sizes and weight? Will they assist you in preparing the documentation for customs? Is the chosen logistics company capable of shipping in Canada, well, at least in the areas where you are going to make most of your deliveries?

If you find it hard to filter the information on the Internet, consider check around or ask your business partners for advice on which courier services to use. When you have done your homework, discuss with the representatives of the shipping companies to confirm all of the information and ask about other details if needed.

4. Price

Without any doubt, price is a huge consideration when choosing a logistics company. Due to customers’ expectations, many businesses have to cut down a lot on shipping costs. According to a study, 54% of shoppers abandoned their carts due to expensive shipping, while 39% abandoned their carts due to no free shipping. Ouch!

However, keep in mind that the lowest price isn’t always the best option. You get what you pay for – any shipping companies that beat out the cost of their competitors are often less reliable, offer less visibility, and usually fall short on customer service. Think “cost-effective”, not “cheap”.

5. Scalability

If everything is going well, does your partner have the ability to scale with your business in the long run? A prospective logistics provider must be not only competent in the specific service areas that meet your company’s needs, but also be able to respond to your changing needs.

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7 Best Corner Guard Designs

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Corner guards are a great accessory to your home, place of business or your office place. They aren’t merely confined to residing in factories or docks but, as many have seen, are great for homes and nurseries; yes we said nurseries. 

Corner guards do a great job of protecting walls from damage, weather, and chemical spills but can also protect from nasty falls, renovation, and moving furniture around. 

So here in this list that we have to take the liberty to compile, we will show you 7 of the Best corner guards designs out there for your home or place of business. 

7 Best Corner Guard Designs

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# 1 – Rubber Corner Guards

It can be frightening having baby roam around to explore the world all by they’re little lonesome. The fear of them falling a scarping themselves on a corners edge is scary just to think about it. 

However, with rubber corner guards placed on walls, corner edges, table edges and desk corner, you can rest assured that if your baby does fall they won’t hurt themselves nearly as bad had there been no guards there to protect them. 

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# 2 –  Stainless Steel Corner Guards

This guard is perhaps one of the most popular corner guards. The stainless steel corner guard is excellent for protection of the walls and corners of homes and building. Being strong enough to protect from any dents or chips on the wall. 

Very easy to install, weather resistant and affordable to set up stainless steel corner guards are indeed a benefit for any business. 

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# 3 – Checkered Stainless Steel Corner Guards

These are wall corner guards for those looking to move around heavy items that need to have some resistance to slow them down, especially if they are being moved with a pulley. 

These may not be corner guards exactly, as they are more like bridges that protect against the floor as well as slow down the descent of objects that would otherwise roll along. 

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# 4 – Wooden Corner Guard 

Now they may very well be weak in regards to the firmer entries, but from a visual design, they look amazing. The wooden corner guards can significantly accentuate anyone kitchen design. It doesn’t always have to be about protection with corner guards Sometimes they are great for just a look. 

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# 5 – Furniture Chair Design Corner Guards

Continuing on from the last entry. Having a corner guard on furniture, like chairs, can highlight the elegance of the furniture. Corner guards as mentioned are not only restricted to the walls or corners but can be utilized in all areas that have some corners. 

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# 6 – Plastic Corner Guards 

They may not be as strong as any of the former entries, but they are, by all means, some of the cheapest corner guards, as well as some the easiest to, maintain and clean. With plastic corner guards not only are they easily replaceable but they are very soft and can protect against falls slightly. 

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# 7 – Foam Corner Guards 

Lastly like the first entry, and the last entry, the foam corner guard, is an ideal corner guard for small toddlers that are roaming around.

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6 Ways To Get The Most Out Of The Flexcart

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Working as a hotel engineer can be quite a difficult task. The primary reason being a hotel engineer is challenging comes in the form of how demanding the job can be. The job can require on any given day a gamut of different task. This can be having to take care of the broken down elevator, to having to fix the toilet in room 409, to having to place wets signs on the floor so that guest and visitors don’t slip.

Lawsuits are not CHEAP.

The task of the hotel engineer is not as easy as it sounds, but it is necessary to have employees, such as hotel engineers, to upkeep and maintain the high standards of the hotel. With the Flexcart products, like the Flexstand – long gone are the days where having to make numerous trips to the back office are a thing. Furthermore, any incident that may be in need of repair can quickly come to a resolution.

If you have not yet invested in a Flexstand, we highly recommend that you give these products a look and discover what the flex storage solutions product can do for your business.

Here are six ways that Flexcart can improve your worker’s productivity as well as make their job less of a hassle.

6 Ways To Get The Most Out Of The Flexcart

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#1 –  Highly Maneuverable

The Flexcart is highly maneuverable and offers extreme amounts of mobility and versatility in navigational aspects. Never has it been easier to enter rooms and areas that many other hotel carts are just too big and clunky to navigate through.

The adequate size of the Flexcart allows for hotel engineers to maneuver wherever they will need to be.

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#2 – Increased Productivity

All the tools that a hotel engineer may need – will be right on, as well as in, the cart. The Flexcart is very much like a mini “Bat-mobile”; having everything the hotel engineer will ever need.

Is there really any other comparison that will make you want to hop on to this product?

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#3 – Fewer Trips To The Backroom

To piggyback off of the second tip. The Flexcart, because it provides all the tools an engineer will need, allows for fewer trips to the backroom to supply up. The less frequent trips to the backroom not only help to increase the worker’s productivity, but it also gives your employees the appearance of a professional. Looks are important, right?

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#4 – Increases Professionalism

This may sound esoteric, but it is not. Hotels must give off an air of professionalism; this is true for everyone. The Flexcart offers the hotel maintenance/ engineer the appearance and the feeling of a professional. Give a man responsibility and a title, and most likely they will do much better. Hence the switch in title from staff maintenance to hotel engineer.

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#5 – Improves Safety

Safety is essential for all manners of business. And as stated in the beginning, having a lawsuit could be extremely problematic. Having all necessary equipment to fix any damages, or potential damages, in an instance – is a great benefit. Not only for the engineer but the guest of the hotel as well.

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#6 – Made Of High Quality

Lastly, the Flexcart is made of high durable quality which makes this cart a cart that will last long. Many hotel carts are made of poor quality, and hence there is a constant need to change them. But with the Flexcart there will be no need to change carts.

Purchase yours today

If you run a hotel or a place of business, then the Flexcart will very much be one of the best decisions for your hotel engineer staff and your business.

Affordable. Highly durable. And extremely beneficial. Get yours today.

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6 Furnace Brands to Consider For Installation

All you need to know about the best furnace installation.  

Let’s be very honest – furnace installations will most likely be one of the most expensive home accessories you will ever buy. For this reason, primarily, it is important that you do a bit of research before making a big decision like this.

Knowing specific questions to ask like:

  • What heating company will be most affordable?
  • What furnace will give the most heat but not at the cost of using to much power?
  • Is it a single stage or a two stage?
  • How much are repairs? Repairing a furnace is just as expensive as buying a new furnace so be mindful of this fact.

It is salient to ask as many questions as possible.

So to help assist you in your furnace hunting endeavors, we have taken the liberty to compile a list of 6 furnace brands that are highly reputable.

It is noteworthy to understand that choosing a furnace is not like purchasing a refrigerator or an oven. Although both, the refrigerator and the oven, offer their purpose – a furnace is much more useful and beneficial for the entirety of your home.

Here are our 6 Furnace Brands you should consider for your Furnace Installation.

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# 1 Lennox Merit 

The Lennox Merit sits at a price tag at $632; the cheapest on our list (however, this does not take away from the furnace’s brand efficacy in providing heat for the home.) This furnace provides single-stage heat and uses a reliable ignitor. The steel heat exchanger allows for less air leakage as well as offering a steel cabinet that is durable and includes a rather pleasant surprise; which is not making too much noise.

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# 2 Maytag PGC2TC

The Maytag PGC2TC will be quite noticeable on your bank account/wallet. This furnace will cost you well over $1,000. However, it offers a superlative heating experience. Providing homes a two-stage heat as well as speed-blower design that varies which reduces noises.

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# 3 Goodman GMEC96

Costing you around $1,200. This furnace brand is one of the most versatile furnaces in our list as the heat or electricity can power it.

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# 4 Ruud Achiever 

The Ruud Achiever uses the highly efficient PlusOne Ignitor system that provides homes the warm and toasty experience they have grown so accustomed to. And like many of the previous listing – this furnace also does an outstanding job of reducing the sound it gives off. (Seeing a running theme here aren’t we?)

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# 5 Coleman Echelon 

Perhaps the most expensive on our list – sitting at a price tag well over $5,000! However, at this price, you get a furnace that is of the highest quality. The Coleman Echelon uses a host of technology that helps to reduce the noise to the point there is no sound, automatically turns on and off when the temperatures change and offer a customizable setting to better harmonize with your home ideal temperature. For a price this much, could you expect anything less?

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# 6 York’s TG8S

Proving that it’s not always how much you pay that counts but in how much you get back out of what you spent. At a price tag well under $1000, at $832, this furnace has been reviewed as one of the best furnaces that were purchased in 2017. It is a single heater. However, it does the job efficiently. It is affordable and highly effective.

Research. Research. And More Research

It will prove most valuable to do as much research when deciding to install a furnace. Make sure that the furnace has a warranty. Check how often they break down along with how much it would cost to replace it. Lastly, keep the thought of how costly it will be on your electric and gas bill.

Research is critical in making this decision.

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6 Ways to Retain And Grow Your Real Estate Clientele With CRM Systems

Many real estate agents still use a regular Excel spreadsheet to manage their client information rather than a specialized real estate CRM system because they think they are nothing more than names and numbers.

What they forget is that client information is a powerful tool that can be used to generate and convert more leads. A Client Relationship Management (CRM) System not only records client information, but also automates the process of sending emails, following up, and quickly addressing complaints.

There are several ways to retain and grow your clientele with a real estate CRM system. Here we discuss six of those ways.

Tracking client information

Besides collecting and storing the names and numbers of your clients, a CRM should also be used to save specific personal data about clients, such as their birthday, hobbies, and social media profiles. Keeping track of such information will give you a deeper insight into what your clients are interested in, the kind of lifestyle they have, and what kind of problems you can solve for them.

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Identifying local customers

Real estate agents usually have local customers comprising almost half of their clientele. As a result, almost 70 to 80 percent of their profits come from those customers. But more often than not, failure to identify the local customers prevents real estate agents from leveraging those leads. A CRM system automatically tracks local customers for you, helping you better cater to the needs of your clients.

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Sending out updates

As a busy real estate agent, you will rarely have time to manually send out updates to your clients. That’s the reason why you should utilize your real estate CRM system to send out regular updates to your clients.

This could be offers related to your services, special deals for existing clients, or a simple thank-you note to show that you value them. A CRM uses the information already stored on the database to curate appropriate updates to strengthen the bond with your clients.

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Analyzing purchase patterns

To be able provide services that help solve your customers needs, you must understand their buying patterns. A real estate CRM system can help you accomplish this like nothing else.

When you combine the CRM system with other analytical tools, you can find out about buying history, patterns, and likes and dislikes. This information can be used to market your services to clients and prospects.

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Responding to complaints

Customer service is one of the most important aspects of a business (Ray Donovan knows all about that and so did Ray Kroc in The Founder!). When customers have a question or a complaint, they expect a quick response from the company. A CRM system can be used to quickly respond to complaints and questions, no matter how busy you are. When a customer gets a prompt solution to his issue, he forms a notable impression of the business and keeps using the services.

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Salient use of social media

Customers use social media more than ever, and it is vital for real estate agents to keep up with them. A CRM system can help you use social media more effectively to engage with your clients and keep track of their buying habits and interests.

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A real estate CRM system is essential for growing your customer base and leveraging your leads. A CRM system from IXACTCONTACTS makes your marketing campaigns more effective and helps you retain your clientele more easily.

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4 Merits of Using Bluetooth Technology Innovations in Shipping & Logistics

Ever since it was invented the Bluetooth technologies has managed to predate the usage of the IoT (Internet of Things) in the society. The ease at which files can be transferred between devices has been enhanced thanks to Bluetooth. By forming the subset of the “internet of things”, Bluetooth has managed to expand its advantages and use even with the shipping companies. The stakeholders in the shipping industry need to take a closer look at the benefits of using this widespread technology and how they will improve the operation of the industry.

Below are the merits of using the Bluetooth Technologies in shipping and logistics companies. The following four categories show the places and sections in the logistic industry that will benefit most if the technology is used.

  1. No more use of manual scanning by shipping companies

The machines and equipment that are Bluetooth-enabled are more efficient and hence no need for manual scanning of packages. The IoT devices can automatically detect other devices and machines in the warehouses, container/shipment, hence triggering the automatic update of information in the particular transportation management system. Such technical ability allows logistics providers to minimize the amount errors experienced during manual scanning, ensure that all the packages have been recorded and account for when they are being picked, packaged and loaded. This will also reduce the workload of employees.

  1. Offering a more secured data-exchange platform for Short Distances

The two main concerns of all logistics providers are security and privacy. Since the Bluetooth-enabled technologies is not automatically connected to the web or internet. The logistics provider will have to supply this information to the current transportation management system. Bluetooth technologies offer a more secured way of communicating information and details about the products and the shipment, without fear of the system being hacked and the information being accessed by the wrong parties. This allows logistic providers to determine and monitor specific functions and activities without transferring any information to another system.

  1. Decreased in the carbon footprint

For many years now the whole world has been campaigning for a greener society. Even the shipping and logistics industry has been constantly put in the spotlight on its contribution to the carbon footprint. The Bluetooth technologies are praised because they few of the global technologies that use very minimal energy to operate. Bluetooth enabled machines will reduce the operating costs like data costs, material costs and electricity. This in turn will reduce the global carbon footprint. Many courier service companies in the shipping industry have embraced environmentally friendly operations and processes. More use of the technology will improve the public perception of the industry and might even result into more favorable tax breaks from governments.

  1. Alignment with the management systems that are mobile-based

The push for timely inventory management in the industry and decisions that are data-driven, will become an essential section on the use of the Bluetooth technologies, which is increasing each day. When using the technology a logistic provider has the capability of collecting and taking inventories from his mobile device of every item that is within 200 feet of the selected area. The Bluetooth technology enhances accountability and visibility in the entire supply chain.

The Bluetooth technologies have become the current technology that is expected to take the global industry to new heights. Shipping in Canada has benefited from his technology. This technology will definitely transform the operations of the shipping industry. The technology not only enhances efficiency, but reduce operation costs.


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4 Reasons Locksmith Services Seem to be Expensive (But Are Worth Every Cent)

We all know that quality never comes cheap, certainly not a quality locksmith in Toronto. Even though we are usually tempted to go after the cheaper options, we are aware that quality product, service, and workmanship come at a price, and there’s always a good reason behind it.

The case is usually the same with locksmith services. Quality means expensive, and it’s the reason why most people try to avoid hiring a locksmith as much as possible. With home security being the need of the hour, the competition is stiff among locksmith companies.

To get ahead of the competition, several locksmiths charge unbelievably low prices. However, the quality is often far from best in these cases. Running after low cost locksmith services are not worth it because they result in damages and repeated expenses. And even in a lower tax environment, who wants that?

Locksmith services are expensive (depending how you look at it), and it isn’t unjustified, given the time, labor, knowledge, and tools that are involved. When you ask a certified locksmith the reason behind his high prices, he will always give you a proper explanation.

The following are four of the reasons that make locksmith services expensive:

The best products

A certified locksmith will always work with the best products. When you install or repair a lock by a certified, professional locksmith, you get the most premium lock on the market, which lasts for years. Cheaper locksmith services manage to keep their price low because they don’t use the best products.

This leads to repeated damages and rising costs. When a premium door lock or home security system is installed, it will last for years and save you additional costs.

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The work of a locksmith is more complex than we can imagine. For instance, when you tell the person on the phone that you are locked out of your house, you imagine the situation to be as simple as unlocking the door for you.

However, when the locksmith arrives on the scene, he may find that he will need to break in or drill the lock, or uninstall the lock and reinstall a new one, besides making new keys for the lock. This is quite a complex work, which makes the bill quadruple.

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Attention to detail

When you hire an expensive locksmith, you can rest assured that even the minutest detail will be paid attention to. No other part of your door or house will be damaged in the process, and all messes will be cleaned up. Besides, a quality locksmith will be insured against damages.

Even if there are accidental damages you will not have to bear the charges. This is something you never get with a cheap locksmith service.

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A professional locksmith will arrive on time and complete the job as soon as possible. Whether you call him at midnight or in the early hours of the morning, you will always get a timely service because a certified, professional locksmith values your time. A cheaper locksmith service will keep delaying and never provide timely work and if they do the work could be subpar. Why pay for subpar work – then the job really does not get done or there ends up being damage to your lock, door, and so on.

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Spending money on professional locksmith services can seem expensive, but it is worth every penny in the long run. If you need a professional locksmith in Toronto, Lock-Up Services is a good place to start your search.


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