Symantec: Booking hotels and online check-ins on flights are unsafe

Hackers can easily get travelers data if customers book trips on special websites. Specialists in cybersecurity make this conclusion.

Experts from Symantec IT-company analyzed booking systems of one than 1500 Canadian, US and European hotels. In the research participated all types of accommodation from 2-stars motels to luxury 5-stars resorts. Experts found that 67% of websites enable leakage of guests’ personal data. Specialists say that safety errors hide in mails with booking confirmation details.

In particular, many emails from hotels contain an active link that directs on a separate website where guests may have access to their booking. Encrypting code and email are often embodied in website URL. If these links are not protected, intruders may use personal data. Possessing this info, they can easily gain access to other details as full name, cell phone number etc.

Symantec specialists informed hotels that had safety issues and majority were address. Company does not disclose what hotels participated in a survey but noted that studied about 45 websites that embrace about 1500 hotels.

For personal protection of confidentiality experts advice to use VPN-connection while booking from public Wi-Fi. Moreover, you can check URL of the confirmatory link you have to see if your booking details are visible. URLs that lack confidentiality contain user’s email in the address line.

Earlier Wandera experts in mobile security investigated that online check-in for a flight can also lead to personal data leakage. Analysts insisted that some companies send customers unprotected links. With their help travelers go to transporter’s website where they usually finish registration and get digital boarding pass. If a passenger uses public Wi-Fi, intruders can intercept the links, enter flight-booking system and see personal data. Among companies that put their customers at risk are Air France, Thomas Cook and Vueling.


Daniel Zimmermann

Daniel Zimmermann has been writing on security and malware subjects for many years and has been working in the security industry for over 10 years. Daniel was educated at the Saarland University in Saarbrücken, Germany and currently lives in New York.

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