“In one of the largest cybersecurity breaches in history, Marriott International said Friday that information on up to about 500 million of its customers worldwide was exposed in a breach of its Starwood guest reservation database dating as far back as 2014,” writes Avie Schneider in their recent NPR article entitled “Marriott Says Up To 500 Million Customers' Data Stolen In Breach.”
“The world's largest hotel chain said it learned of the breach on Sept. 8,” Schneider explains.
According to the article, “The company said the Marriott hotel network was not affected. ‘The investigation only identified unauthorized access to the separate Starwood network,’ it said. Marriott acquired Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide in 2016.”
“For 327 million of the affected guests, the compromised data 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,” the company said in Schneider’s article.
“For some customers, the information ‘also includes payment card numbers and payment card expiration dates, but the payment card numbers were encrypted,” Marriott added in the NPR piece.
Your personal data is yours to provide how you deem suited, whether it’s your date of birth or critical payment information.
And whether you’re running a hotel or any other property, anything related to your customers must be a top priority.
We know you agree with that.
That’s why we thought it necessary to provide insight into what you could do to decrease your property’s chances of any form of a breach.
Let’s get started!
The Chosen Methodology to Help Prevent a Breach
Over the years, we’ve worked with many experts in various industries to help them improve the efficiency and effectiveness of their operation.
From customer service to critical incidents like a breach, we’re obsessed in our pursuit to understand what’s needed to help our customers achieve success.
We’ve always worked to discover ways to contribute to the success of every operational function.
- What are the fundamental needs of the industry?
- What’s important and relevant to the experts in each field?
- What are the collective strengths and weaknesses that they all share?
- What is missing?
That’s when we had an epiphany.
Operations across every industry must move away from the reactive mindset they’ve had for years.
It’s time for a proactive approach – one that will evolve with the demands of the environment.
We’ve done just that.
And while our long-term relationships with industry experts have shaped Proactive Operations, it’s their participation and contribution that has ignited a movement.
With Proactive Operations and 24/7 Software’s platform, you have the advantage of maximizing your performance in ways that can help prevent critical incidents like a breach from ruining your operation and customer experience.
Three Aspects of a Proactive Operation That Can Prevent a Breach
If you’ve read our long-form resource on Proactive Operations here, then you know that Proactive Operations is a methodology by which property operations utilize strategy, infrastructure, and technology to achieve maximum performance.
Each of these pillars contributes in their way, but all of them together move your operation to a Proactive one.
Get an overview below of how each can help your operation prevent and even mitigate the impact of a breach.
Then, head over to the resource above to get the in-depth details of each pillar.
Trust us – it’s not only crucial for breaches either. This information could change your entire operation for good.
Strategy is the first pillar for building Proactive Operations. Examine and scrutinize all areas of your operation to identify strengths, weaknesses, and opportunities for advancement.
Use the ACDA Principle™ to understand, apply, and continuously improve your Awareness, Communication, Documentation, and Analysis.
Infrastructure is the second pillar.
Yours is based on your operational needs.
But you must have one. It should include representatives from any functional area where issues or incidents could affect performance and the customer experience.
By investing in the design and development of an infrastructure, you create the opportunity to manage agile operations and organized personnel while maintaining a streamlined flow of information.
Technology is pillar three – and where software solutions providers like 24/7 Software are the expert.
We’re excited to play a part in your achievement of Proactive Operations.
Strengthen this final component by implementing software solutions that optimize all three pillars. It will help skyrocket your performance.
Get the real-time communication and information you deserve, create memorable customer experiences, and reduce your risk.
Over to You
Marriott’s untimely breach of 500 million customers should be giving you anxiety too. It’s a critical incident in the relative sense that your property’s operation could experience a breach of its own.
You need to be prepared for the possibility that something this significant may affect your operation too. How can you help counter a breach? By putting a methodology like Proactive Operations in place to help prevent it altogether.