Eye on Hospitality: Learn About Cyberthreats at Washington Hospitality Lodging Convention

Eye on Hospitality: Learn About Cyberthreats at Washington Hospitality Lodging Convention

By Paul Schlienz

In August, the Seattle Office of Federal Bureau of Inspection (FBI) and the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Seattle alerted the Washington Hospitality Association to a growing threat to the hospitality industry from cybercriminals.

FIN7 or the Carbanak Group, an organization with suspected ties to Eastern European cybercrime gangs is believed to be perpetrating this latest wave of wave of cybercrime. The hackers are stealing point-of-sale data and victims range from small businesses to international chains. This hacking group uses social engineering tactics, including phone calls to employees of the victim companies, to convince victims to activate malware planted in phishing emails. The suspects operating this criminal enterprise are very sophisticated and difficult to detect. Worst of all, common anti-virus products often fail to detect the malware.

More than 20 U.S.-based hotels and restaurants, including Baja Fresh, Chipotle and Ruby Tuesday, have been successfully hacked by this group.

We take this threat seriously, and you should, too.

To help your business protect itself from these cybercriminals, the Washington Hospitality Association is offering our members are rare opportunity to get up to speed on these threats at our Lodging Convention (Tulalip Resort Casino, Oct. 22-24). On Monday, Oct. 23, at 10 a.m., a panel of experts will present a workshop entitled “What Hoteliers Need to Know and Do About Sophisticated Hackers Targeting the Hospitality Industry.”

If you have any further questions, contact Paul Schlienz at the Washington Hospitality Association.

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