Almost three-quarters of hotels lack adequate internet security: WatchGuard

Almost three quarters of hotels around the world do not provide adequate security on Wi-Fi systems, leaving guests vulnerable to attack from cybercriminals.

That's according to the latest WatchGuard survey, which has revealed 71 percent of global hotels, restaurants and other hospitality organisations do not provide unique temporary user passwords for guest wi-fi networks, which could compromise corporate and guest network security.

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The survey also found 51 per cent of global hospitality organisations do not monitor guest networks for suspect applications, malware or malicious activities.

Further, 62 percent do not monitor guest activity to limit bandwidth-intensive applications, while 48 percent do not use policy mapping or data visualisation tools to monitor performance.

Systemnet, director David Kotze, said guests were required to hand over sensitive information such as credit card details, drivers licence and passport numbers, as soon as they walked in the door.

"All this information needs to be protected as required by Australian law. It's absolutely essential that hotels protect their networks and deliver on security requirements.

"A breach and subsequent compromise of personal information could seriously damage a hotel's reputation."

Systemnet is a Sydney-based IT solutions company.

Watchguard Technologies country manager, David Higgins, said providing guests with safe, reliable and well managed access to Internet and wi-fi services was an essential part of doing business in the hospitality industry.

"It's clear that a lot of hospitality organisations need advice and access to network security solutions that will help them protect their customers whilst delivering secure network services," he said.

"WatchGuard appliances provide a significant increase in visibility and control over guest wireless networks and our customers are very happy to have a cost-effective solution that meets the demands of this industry."

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Brian Karlovsky

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