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Discussion in 'Newsstand' started by uggboy, Aug 15, 2016.
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Hotel chains across the US 'targeted by hackers' for months
I love the vaguity of this article. Which hotels, which locations? No need for those irrelevant pieces of info.
What the article doesn't say, I can't say, but it's of interest for some and it's good to know overall IMHO.
I don't disagree. I would like to know if I stayed in one of the hotels, though. No way to tell.
Hotel operator HEI Hotels recently became aware of a malware intrusion that affected some point-of-sale systems at a limited number of Starwood hotels in North America as well as other hotel companies. HEI Hotels has shared in a public statement that this incident “could have affected the payment card information of certain individuals who used payment cards at point-of-sale terminals, such as food and beverage outlets.” HEI says the incident has now been contained and individuals can safely use payment cards at all of their properties.
List of affected properties:
Protecting the security of our customers’ personal information is a top priority for Starwood. We want to share with you a resource for finding out more about this incident. HEI Hotels is providing access to a Toll-Free Call Center, with operators standing by to address your questions and concerns. You can reach this call center by dialing 1-888-849-1113 between 9am and 9pm Eastern Time, Monday through Friday.
HEI Public Notice:
William R. Sanders
Social Media Specialist
Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide
I put LastPass into place for myself and all of my employees years ago. We change our passwords several times per year, and all payment cards are monitored at least weekly for any unauthorized charges.
LastPass has been good for us, although they did have a hack a couple of years ago, I think. We weren't affected. There are several other sites that offer the same kind of services. We have simply chosen to stay with LastPass because of everyone's comfort level after years of use, plus it's just too cheap to be worth shopping. We started with the free version, and that worked fine for years, but then we decided to go to the Enterprise version so that we can control the passwords for anyone we may need to cut off.
I mention this, as it's related to hacking. We do a lot of online transactions both in selling and purchasing, and it's simply amazing how many data-sensitive sites we access with great regularity.
Our new standard is a very long password that is generated by LastPass. The longer and more random passwords are infinitely more difficult to hack, so there is no point in hackers spending their time even trying. By controlling all employees passwords, it prevents any of the technologically lazy ones from going with their mother's maiden name123 or something equally simplistic. Those are the ones that can bring down an entire comany's security effort.
Card readers with malware require carelessness on the part of a low level employee, so that will not be preventable unless perhaps the chip readers are as secure as they claim. Still, not enough places are using those yet, so we're probably a couple of years from those being the standard.
Bottom line: You are your best defense against hackers. They will never give up on trying, so you can't either. Even if your bank covers fraudulent charges, we're all paying for that in transaction charges and interest rates. As travelers, we are more susceptible than homebodies to this highly profitable form of cybercrime, so by doing everything possible to prevent and/or catch it we are all helping one another. We must remain vigilant and take every step possible to make the criminals fail with us.
Thank you Mr. Sanders!