Hotels are no longer the No. 1 target of hackers in their quest to steal credit card information but your data still has a higher chance of being stolen inside a hotel, a veteran cybersleuth tells Hotel Check-In.
Last year, hotels became a top priority for online criminals seeking to steal travelers’ credit-card information and other data.
But this year, online thieves are now focusing on restaurants, Nicholas Percoco, senior vice president and head of SpiderLabs at data security firm Trustwave, told me. That means they might target a posh hotel restaurant with a sommelier, a fast-food joint or anything else in between.
Thieves started to ease up on hotel computer systems in mid-2010, about 18 months after attacking Wyndham hotel computers and computers of other chains.
I asked Percoco if hotels moved down a notch because the industry spent more money to protect their computer systems, if travelers got smarter or if thieves just decided to move on.
It’s a mix, he told me. Many of the big chains – like Marriott, Hilton and InterContinental Hotels Group, though he wouldn’t name names – have thrown resources to shore up their computer security, he told me.
Furthermore, all the media reports about hotels being at risk for cybercrimes made the thieves fearful that they could get caught.
As they did with hotels, these cybercriminals look for a weak link in a restaurant or fast-food chain and enter their computer system to steal credit-card information and other data