Hospitality Security: 3 Tips to Protect Your Brand

Dec 06, 2019

How do you ensure your property offers guests as secure an environment as possible? Today we outline three proactive tips to minimize your risk.

  1. Monitor Loyalty Account Use

Perhaps surprisingly, loyalty account takeover is becoming a challenge as fraudsters know that reward redemptions aren't scrutinized as rigorously as traditional payments. Your most loyal guests often accumulate high reward balances, making their reward accounts vulnerable to exploits. In fact, loyalty members have recently reported that fraudsters spent their loyalty points on luxury stays in cities where the members have not traveled. To monitor your guests’ loyalty and reward accounts, train staff to recognize out-of-character guest behaviors. Large point redemptions in a single transaction should be flagged, and carefully scrutinized. Consider implementing a more stringent redemption policy that requires members to authenticate their identities and account details. It not only displays how much importance your brand places on security, but it can also help minimize upsetting your most loyal guests.

  1. Safeguard Against Data Breaches

Breached data – no matter how small – negatively impacts your brand reputation, which can result in future revenue losses.  In some hospitality technologies that process credit cards, the CV (Card Verification) numbers may be logged electronically, making them accessible by scammers. To safeguard your data, work with a reliable hospitality technology partner, and use payment transaction technology that leverages the latest security protocols. Those technologies should employ – or integrate with solutions that use payment tokenization. Confirm that your technology partner is a PA-DSS, PCI-validated provider. If you have recently added to or updated systems that contain guest and financial data, vulnerability scanning is another important measure that can protect your brand.

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  1. Break Down Departmental Walls

Your IT and Security teams must work together to protect the business. A combined team whose goal is protecting the business may help identify areas where there are gaps in security. The IT team focuses on delivering a scalable, flexible solution architecture to ensure the business continues to operate effectively, while the Security team keeps tabs on cyber and network security, and controls physical access to property areas. Make it a priority to brings these teams together by placing the two departments under the same reporting structure. Alternatively, conduct regular interdepartmental meetings to facilitate open collaboration.

When guests arrive on property, data security should be the last thing on their minds. As the industry has become an attractive target for fraudsters, hotels and resorts should make security a top priority. After all, “The best defense is a good offense.”

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