Courtesy Notification—Marriott-owned Starwood Hotel Data Security Breach
Please note the following notification received from Marriott International, owners of Marriott and Starwood (Sheraton, Westin, etc*) hotels:
Marriott International owns or manages a number of hotel brands, and this security breach is with respect to hotels under their Starwood branding. It may have affected data internationally as early as 2014, per their notification. Noting that your most recent hotel reservation in association with the 2018 MRS Fall meeting may also be part of this security breach, MRS is providing this information as a courtesy to our attendees.
Should you have any questions, please contact Marriott directly. Information can be found here: https://answers.kroll.com/. Here is an excerpt from their information page; there is also a call center available 24/7:
Marriott values our guests and understands the importance of protecting personal information. We have taken measures to investigate and address a data security incident involving the Starwood guest reservation database. The investigation has determined that there was unauthorized access to the database, which contained guest information relating to reservations at Starwood properties on or before September 10, 2018. This notice explains what happened, measures we have taken, and some steps you can take in response.
On September 8, 2018, Marriott received an alert from an internal security tool regarding an attempt to access the Starwood guest reservation database. Marriott quickly engaged leading security experts to help determine what occurred. Marriott learned during the investigation that there had been unauthorized access to the Starwood network since 2014. Marriott recently discovered that an unauthorized party had copied and encrypted information, and took steps towards removing it. On November 19, 2018, Marriott was able to decrypt the information and determined that the contents were from the Starwood guest reservation database.
*Starwood brands include: W Hotels, St. Regis, Sheraton Hotels & Resorts, Westin Hotels & Resorts, Element Hotels, Aloft Hotels, The Luxury Collection, Tribute Portfolio, Le Méridien Hotels & Resorts, Four Points by Sheraton and Design Hotels. Starwood branded timeshare properties are also included.