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July 2019's Converge Newsletter
Hospitality Cyber Threats Are Alive & Well – Lessons From Recent Incidents
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July 16, 2019 via ConvergeBlog

The data incident involving the Starwood guest database was one of the most significant data security incidents in recent years. Publicly announced on November 30, 2018, the details revealed in the days and weeks following the announcement contain some striking reminders and new lessons for the hospitality industry. Here are some of the key facts of the incident:

  • Marriott acquired Starwood in September of 2016, but Marriott continued to operate Starwood’s guest database separately from Marriott’s until a few weeks after the breach incident was announced.
  • The unauthorized intrusion into Starwood’s database occurred in 2014, but was not discovered by Starwood nor by Marriott later during the course of its acquisition of Starwood.
  • The guest information compromised in the incident included name, address, phone number, email address, passport number, preferred guest account information, date of birth, gender, arrival and departure information, reservation date, and communication preference, and in some instances, payment card numbers and expiration dates. It was ultimately reported by Marriott’s forensic assessment provider the 383 million records were affected.

Eckert Seamans's ConvergeBlog
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Nebraska Attorney General Sues Hilton Over Resort Fees

July 25, 2019 via Hotel Management

The lawsuit comes on the heels of a similar one filed two weeks ago by Washington, D.C., Attorney General Karl Racine against Marriott International that claims the company violates consumer protection laws by adding hidden fees.
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Use of Surcharges and Best Tips to Avoid False Advertising and Other Consumer Claims

July 13, 2019 via ConvergeBlog
Due to a myriad of legislative and court decisions, some restaurants particularly in California have elected to add a surcharge to their receipts to defray increased costs incurred over the last several years...As such, these surcharges need to be analyzed for taxation purposes and legality as to how they are implemented.
Wilson Elser
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Repeat Offenders: Commonly Cited OSHA Standards in the Hospitality Industry & How to Avoid Them
June 29, 2019 via ConvergeBlog

Without being able to change OSHA’s civil penalty authority, OSHA changed numerous policies and practices with the specific intent to find and cite more Repeat violations, because Repeat violations carried 10 times higher penalties than Serious and Other-than-Serious violations.
Conn Maciel Carey
The Hospitality Law Conference: Series 2.0 - Washington DC
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