From CBS This Morning coverage to a recent article in Skift, there is no shortage of new hotel innovations being highlighted by the media. From robotic concierges to the delivery of poolside cocktails with a drone, all of these innovations make for captivating news stories.
However, it’s easy to overlook one very important component of all of this innovation – cybersecurity.
For example, in this Skift story that showcases the new technologies that Starwood Hotels is developing, one particular item grabbed our attention from a security perspective – the “smart mirror.”
The brand developed the concept so guests could check the weather and read headlines right from their bathroom mirrors. A second iteration of this will allow the mirror to integrate with the guests’ devices in order to check email and texts.
Indeed, this is some very cutting-edge stuff, which will most likely be commonplace in hotels – and in our homes – in about five years.
But the issue of vulnerable data needs to be addressed. Risks abound by sharing contacts, and other information via Bluetooth. This Information Security Forum discusses how Bluetooth is not a secure technology. By guests making their devices or computers “discoverable,” they are making themselves highly exposed.
On the one-hand, great publicity about new innovations will go a very long way in enhancing overall brand awareness. On the other, a media storm surrounding a data breach occurring at a hotel property is far from ideal.
When planned strategically, every new hotel innovation can help enhance business growth for any hotelier. Of course, these technologies need to also enhance the guest experience and be highly personalized. And, now we are adding a new layer with security.