Long-brewing malware leads to Rosen Hotels breach

Rosen Hotels & Resorts Inc. recently announced that it discovered malware within its card network. According to a statement from the company published on March 4, this malware could have affected any cards used at the company's international hotels "between September 2, 2014 and February 18, 2016." While this breach didn't necessarily put consumer information at risk in every case, some users may have had their cardholder names exposed as well as important payment card data.

The statement also encouraged visitors to the hotel chain to "remain vigilant" and look for possible unauthorized charges. The company is also working with the law to assure patrons are taken care of as the investigations continue.

"Findings from the investigation show that an unauthorized person installed malware in RH&R's payment card network that searched for data read from the magnetic stripe of payment cards as it was routed through the affected systems," the statement adds. The chain officially began looking into the issue after it first received reports of unauthorized charges on February 3.

Hotels continue to be a vulnerable site for card breach activity. Last November, Hilton Worldwide announced a similar situation, in which malware affected the point of sale credit card processing terminals used at some of its locations. The customers at risk could have visited Hilton hotels within two separate periods, one between November and December in 2014, and the other between April and July of the following year.

Front desk staff have to be on the alert to reduce card fraud and leave legitimate cardholders feeling secure. Part of this can include seeking out new credit processing software to update their systems and stay protected against the latest forms of malware. Point of sale businesses of all types owe it to themselves to do the best they can by their customers using legitimate tools.

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