February 04, 2019

This article originally appeared in The New York Times. An excerpt is as follows.

"Travel companies were hit by one data breach after another last year — firms including Marriott, British Airways, Delta Air Lines and the travel booking site Orbitz.

Marriott estimates that as a result of its breach — in which the reservation database of Starwood-branded hotels in its portfolio was hacked — 383 million guest records could have been affected and 5.25 million unencrypted passport numbers were possibly compromised. And experts expect breaches in the travel sector will continue...

Bruce McIndoe, president of WorldAware, a risk management company, recommends creating a “digital persona” when booking travel or making other online transactions. This can include setting up a new, disposable phone number using a service like Google Voice and RingCentral to screen any calls based on caller ID, and to forward these to the phone number that you want to protect.

Mr. McIndoe also suggests creating what he calls a throwaway email address, to be used only when booking online, to protect your actual personal or work email from theft. You can also keep your home and work addresses private with a service like, and, which can create a new mailing address for you. And you can rent a post office box from the United States Postal Service, though this cannot be used for many online transactions.

There are many steps you can take to protect any device you bring on business trips. If you work for a large company or service provider, like a law or accounting firm, your employer may be able to provide clean devices, even some with special protections appropriate for whatever destination you visit."


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