by Michael J. Shapiro | November 20, 2015
The point-of-sale systems at a number of Starwood's North American hotels was compromised due to a malware infection, the lodging company acknowledged Friday. The malware affected certain restaurants, gift shops and other point-of-sale systems at 54 different properties across North America. Most of the affected properties were either Sheraton, W or Westin hotels; a list can be found here, along with the relevant dates of exposure. The payment systems at these properties have since been secured.

Starwood engaged third-party experts to investigate the intrusion, who found no evidence that the guest-reservation system nor the Starwood Preferred Guest loyalty platform were compromised.

"Protecting our customers' information is critically important to Starwood and we take this issue extremely seriously," said Sergio Rivera, Starwood president, the Americas. "Quickly after we became aware of the possible issue, we took prompt action to determine the facts. We have been working closely with law-enforcement authorities and have been coordinating our efforts with the payment-card organizations. We want to assure our customers that we have implemented additional security measures to help prevent this type of crime from reoccurring."

The lodging company advises all customers of the affected properties to carefully review their statements for any suspicious activity.