Travel, Tourism & Hospitality

Marriott says 5.2m guests exposed in data breach

Marriott International, a global hotel operator with a portfolio of more than 7,300 properties under 30 brands in 134 countries, said that information about 5.2 million of its guests has been breached.

It said the breached information included:

•    contact details (e.g., name, mailing address, email address, and phone number)
•    loyalty account information (e.g., account number and points balance, but not passwords)
•    additional personal details (e.g., company, gender, and birthday day and month)
•    partnerships and affiliations (e.g., linked airline loyalty programs and numbers)
•    preferences (e.g., stay/room preferences and language preference)

Hotels operated and franchised under Marriott’s brands use an application to help provide services to guests at hotels.

At the end of February 2020, the company identified that an unexpected amount of guest information may have been accessed using the login credentials of two employees at a franchise property. The company believes that this activity started in mid-January 2020, a Marriott statement said.

Upon discovery, the company confirmed that the login credentials were disabled, immediately began an investigation, implemented heightened monitoring, and arranged resources to inform and assist guests. Marriott also notified relevant authorities and is supporting their investigations, it added.

Marriott is sending emails to guests involved, the statement said, highlighting that it has set up a dedicated website and call centre resources with additional information for guests.  The email sent to guests and the website also contain a list of steps guests involved can consider taking and information about enrolling in a personal information monitoring service that Marriott is providing.

Marriott carries insurance, including cyber insurance, commensurate with its size and the nature of its operations, and the company is working with its insurers to assess coverage. The company does not currently believe that its total costs related to this incident will be significant, according to the statement. – TradeArabia News Service