HACKED! Marriott and Starwood Systems Breached, 500 Million Affected

Today Marriott said that the information of over 500 million of its guests was breached and has been breached since 2014, well before the official merger that happened back in August of 2018.

In a statement, Marriott said: “For approximately 327 million of these guests, the information includes some combination of name, mailing address, phone number, email address, passport number, Starwood Preferred Guest (“SPG”) account information, date of birth, gender, arrival and departure information, reservation date, and communication preferences.”

Some people’s credit card information was also taken, but since there are various methods needed to unecrypt the information, it’s unclear if the hackers has the required information. Nevertheless, Marriott has reported the information to law enforcement (for what that’s worth…)

SPG-Marriot-Ritz merger

SPG-Marriot-Ritz merger

If you’ve made a reservation at a Starwood hotel since at least 2014, it’s quite possible that your information has been hacked. 

The official statement says:

Marriott values our guests and understands the importance of protecting personal information. We have taken measures to investigate and address a data security incident involving the Starwood guest reservation database. The investigation has determined that there was unauthorized access to the database, which contained guest information relating to reservations at Starwood properties on or before September 10, 2018

September 10

So, Marriott has known about this since the 10th of September, and is just now letting everyone know about it, two and a half months later. Watch your email today to find out if you’ve been affected, but let’s be honest… it probably was. British Airways got hacked a while back, now Marriott… chances are someone has your information out there. This really infuriates me, as they’ve known about it for almost three full months and are just letting everyone know about it right now. If you’re concerned about your information, feel free to reach out to your credit card companies to discuss options about what you can do. Alternatively…

Free WebWatcher Enrollment

Marriott is providing guests the opportunity to enroll in WebWatcher free of charge for one year. WebWatcher monitors internet sites where personal information is shared and generates an alert to the consumer if evidence of the consumer’s personal information is found. Due to regulatory and other reasons, WebWatcher or similar products are not available in all countries. Guests from the United States who complete the WebWatcher enrollment process will also be provided fraud consultation services and reimbursement coverage for free. 

(you could stay here but you’ll have all your information stolen… welcome to Paradise)

You can get more information about the hack at Marriott’s official web release here, and watch your emails to see what else Marriott has to share.

Author: Jon Nickel-D'Andrea

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