When Motel 6 began to see an increasing number of threats making it through the company’s multiple layers of security, they acted swiftly to find and deploy a solution with more advanced global threat intelligence.
The Motel 6 network consists of 1,100 properties under the Motel 6 and Studio 6 brands. The company’s primary and back-up data centers serve an extensive network of approximately 5,000 endpoints throughout the continent.
Like retailers, hospitality companies must manage and secure sensitive customer data including credit card numbers and personal identification information. As an employer, the company also handles personal health information. Compliance and risk management go hand in hand, as top corporate priorities.
“Everything comes down to risk—how the business might be impacted and how we can minimize risk while maximizing the returns from our secuirty dollars,” said Andrew McCullough, the lead information security architect for Motel 6.
“In the hospitality industry, security is imporatant to everyone. Credit card or identification or health information—these are all synonymous because of the challenge and cost of recovery from data theft. We can’t afford to have our brands publicly associated with any breach of security. The reality is that people don’t trust their information being given to a company that has been compromised, especially if it happens more than once.”
Industry efforts to improve security, with regulations and guidelines promoted by the Payment Card Industry (PCI) and various government agencies, have changed operating practices and policies for companies like Motel 6.
“For retail and hospitality, PCI has made companies wake up and think about security,” said McCullough. “The guidelines are not perfect, but they are a step in the right direction and especially important in our business. Hospitality has been targeted over the last few years. I pay close attention to the threat activity in our industry as well as the bigger retail landscape.”