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Definitely Doug 10/18/19
Posted: 12/06/2019

Sustainable Innovation
 
Sustainability can yield multiple benefits to hotels. Saving energy and water yields direct cost savings. Revenue can be generated by guests who prefer to deal with businesses that minimize their environmental impact. And many would argue that conserving scarce resources is simply the right thing to do.

Definitely Doug 12/6/19
Posted: 12/06/2019

Meetings Innovation
 
The sale and delivery of groups and meetings is perhaps the most significant and under-automated functions for many hotels. Even though groups often account for 30% to 60% of revenue, most group bookings are still handled manually for most if not all of steps, as they move from a meeting planner’s research to a confirmed booking.

The biggest enemy to any system is complexity. In a system of inputs and outputs, such as an enterprise system, more complexity means more parts are used in interaction with inputs to create the outputs. Every part that must be built and maintained costs time and money

Tracking the evolution of key performance indicators (KPIs) over time allows hoteliers to identify meaningful trends, create forecasts and budgets and assess the results of different strategies. To perform this kind of analysis, data has to be recorded within consistent time intervals and in chronological order. This is known as a time series.

Definitely Doug 11/15/19
Posted: 11/15/2019

Every time I turn around these days, I see a new vendor or product promising something called a complete Guest Experience Management, Guest Journey Management, or Guest Engagement (or some variation on those words). This week I looked at some of the emerging products claiming to be in this space, both to try to better understand it, and to see what promising ideas it may hold.



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What Is the Secret to Secret Passwords?

06/11/2014
by Ryan Ward
Sadly, according to last year’s Data Breach Investigation Report, the hospitality industry grabbed the top spot for the most data breaches in both 2011 and 2012. Released in April, the results for 2013 show the same ranking. The industry snapshots, aimed at helping organizations understand the anatomy of a data breach and how to best provide protection, offered an in-depth view of the financial services, health care, retail and hospitality sectors. Ranking behind the retail industry is, in my opinion, embarrassing.
   It was interesting that 76 percent of all industry breaches were based on weak or stolen password credentials. That’s why in the Summer 2014 issue of Hospitality Upgrade ("Tips for Password Security That Actually Work") you’ll learn some valuable tips on how to establish a corporate password management program that really works.
 
   The article covers the problems and solutions around the use and misuse of multiple passwords; how to compose hard-to-guess passwords; the importance of non-Latin passwords; changing and reusing passwords; the art and science of keeping passwords secret; intruder detection and lockout; synchronizing passwords and the latest in single sign-on; user authentication; and IT support for forgotten and locked out passwords.
 
   A strong password management program also should include the ability to shut down passwords when people leave. Over half of the insiders committing sabotage (think Edward Snowden in a waiter’s outfit) were former employees taking advantage of old accounts that were never closed.
 
One portion of the upcoming article on “Tips for Password Security That Actually Work” provides insight into the 25 worst passwords of 2013 courtesy of Splashdata, who measures them. Last year, “123456” dethroned “password” as the No. 1 password in use. My personal favorites were “iloveyou” (ranked 9th); “letmein” (very clever and ranked No. 14); “photoshop” (ranked No. 15, thank you Adobe); “monkey” (which dropped dramatically from No. 6 to No. 17—but is so random I question why it made the list in the first place); and my personal favorite “princess” (coming in at No. 22. That one might have ranked higher but I made my daughter stop using it…).
 
Read the article, “Tips for Password Security That Actually Work,” in the upcoming Summer issue of Hospitality Upgrade, due out June 18.
 

Verizon Data Breach Investigation Report 2013

  • 76% of network intrusions exploited weak or stolen credentials
  • Over 50% of the insiders committing sabotage were former employees taking advantage of old accounts.
  • Unapproved hardware (such as handheld card skimmers and personal storage devices) accounts for 41% of the cases of misuse in the report.
  • It wasn’t IT-savvy developers and administrators that were responsible for
    most data breaches, but customer service staff (like cashiers and call center
    employees) and end users. 
  • Administrators came third, but in 60% of the cases, their involvement was accidental. 47% came from customer service (call centers and cashiers)
 Hospitality and Foodservices
  • This industry has been particularly vulnerable to data breaches, and for the past two years has had more breaches than any other industry. This remains true for 2013.
  • The POS systems, which are needed to process payment transactions, have proven to be easy targets for organized criminal groups.
  • This industry, more so than any other, should emphasize preventive actions.
 
 
About The Author
Ryan Ward
Chief Security Officer
Avatier Corporation


 
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