Starwood Hotels & Resorts reports payment card information breach at 54 properties

Austen Hufford reports:

A data breach at Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide Inc. exposed payment card information for some of its North American hotels, the latest cybersecurity incident to sting a U.S. company.

Read more on WSJ.

A list of the 54 properties affected and the dates of compromise are provided here (pdf). In some locations, the malware compromise began in November, 2014.

Starwood, which boasts more than 1,270 properties worldwide in 100 countries, issued the following statement today:

November 20, 2015

Promptly after discovering the issue, Starwood engaged third-party forensic experts to conduct an extensive investigation to determine the facts. Based on the investigation, malware was detected that affected certain restaurants, gift shops and other point of sale systems at the relevant Starwood properties. There is no indication at this time that the Company’s guest reservation or Starwood Preferred Guest membership systems were impacted. The malware was designed to collect certain payment card information, including cardholder name, payment card number, security code and expiration date. There is no evidence that other customer information, such as contact information or PINs, were affected by this issue. The affected hotels have taken steps to secure customer payment card information and the malware no longer presents a threat to customers using payment cards at Starwood hotels.

“Protecting our customers’ information is critically important to Starwood and we take this issue extremely seriously,” said Sergio Rivera, Starwood President, The Americas. “Quickly after we became aware of the possible issue, we took prompt action to determine the facts. We have been working closely with law enforcement authorities and have been coordinating our efforts with the payment card organizations. We want to assure our customers that we have implemented additional security measures to help prevent this type of crime from reoccurring.”

Starwood encourages customers to carefully review and monitor their payment card account statements. If a customer believes his or her payment card may have been affected, the customer should immediately contact their bank or card issuer.

The locations and potential dates of exposure for each affected Starwood property is available at www.starwoodhotels.com/paymentcardsecuritynotice. Customers with questions may call 1-855-270-9179 (U.S. and Canada) or 1-512-201-2201 (International), Monday through Saturday, 8:00 am to 8:00 pm CST or visit www.starwoodhotels.com/paymentcardsecuritynotice for more information.

Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. is a hotel and leisure company with nearly 1,275 properties under the brands of St. Regis®, The Luxury Collection®, W®, Westin®, Le Méridien®, Sheraton®, Four Points® by Sheraton, Aloft®, Element® and the Tribute Portfolio™.

Source: Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc.

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