For the second time in 18 months, Marriott International has experienced a data breach. Marriott International announced that it is notifying some of its guests today of an incident involving a property system. The notice explains what occurred, the information involved, the measures taken by Marriott to investigate and address the issue, how Marriott is assisting guests, and steps guests can consider taking.
Hotels operated and franchised under Marriott’s brands use an application to help provide services to guests at hotels. At the end of February 2020, the company identified that an unexpected amount of guest information may have been accessed using the login credentials of two employees at a franchise property. The company believes that this activity started in mid-January 2020. Upon discovery, the company confirmed that the login credentials were disabled, immediately began an investigation, implemented heightened monitoring, and arranged resources to inform and assist guests. Marriott also notified relevant authorities and is supporting their investigations.
Marriott’s investigation is ongoing, but the company says it currently has no reason to believe that the information involved included Marriott Bonvoy account passwords or PINs, payment card information, passport information, national IDs, or driver’s license numbers.
Although not all of this information was present for every guest the stolen data may have involved:
• contact details (e.g., name, mailing address, email address, and phone number)
• loyalty account information (e.g., account number and points balance, but not passwords)
• additional personal details (e.g., company, gender, and birthday day and month)
• partnerships and affiliations (e.g., linked airline loyalty programs and numbers)
• preferences (e.g., stay/room preferences and language preference)
Today, Marriott is sending emails to guests involved. Marriott has also set up a dedicated website (www.mysupport.marriott.com) and call center resources with additional information for guests. The call center resources can be reached by calling the numbers listed on the dedicated website. The email sent to guests and the website also contain a list of steps guests involved can consider taking and information about enrolling in a personal information monitoring service that Marriott is providing.
Marriott carries insurance, including cyber insurance, commensurate with its size and the nature of its operations, and the company is working with its insurers to assess coverage. The company does not currently believe that its total costs related to this incident will be significant.