Travelodge customer info hacked

Hotel News - 27/06/2011

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Hackers have apparently broken into a database containing the personal data of Travelodge customers. The hotel chain says it is investigating the apparent theft of customer’s names and email addresses.

A Travelodge spokesperson says a ‘third party’ has managed to gain access to the names of customers, as well as their email addresses. The hotel chain has warned people using its online service to watch out for spam emails.

Britain’s information commissioner has been informed of the security breach. Business who fail to meet legal obligations to protect confidential data can be fined .

In a letter to customers, the company divulged few bits of information concerning the data leak. Signed by Travelodge CEO Guy Parsons, the letter insisted the company does not sell users’ personal information to other parties.

The letter also provided some details about spam emails that were sent to some customers. The message is poorly worded and tries to tempt recipients with news about potential jobs.

A spokesman for Christopher Graham, the UK’s information commissioner, said the commissioner was investigating reports of the Travelodge data breach. The statement said the commissioner would be looking into the circumstances surrounding the alleged contravention of the UK’s Data Protection Act.

Once the commissioner determines if there has been a breach, he will then decide whether any action needs to be taken. Where companies or organisation have been shown to fail in their duty to protection personal data, the ICO can fine them as much as £500,000.

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