Monthly Archives: March 2019

27 February 2019, Hackers execute ransomware attack on hotel in Lucknow, India

The Times of India on 11 March reported that hackers attacked a hotel in Lucknow, India, with ransomware. Police say it is the first such attack on a hotel in the city’s history. At 11:45 pm on 27 February 2019, hackers breached the computer system of The Piccadily Lucknow, a five star hotel. Prateek Dubey, a cyber security specialist, said the hackers used a phishing tactic to gain access to the hotel’s computer system. Then they installed malware that encrypted the hotel’s computer data, which also blocked staff from accessing it. As hotel staff tried to figure out what was wrong, a ransom message popped up on their computer screen, which said, “Oops, your important files are encrypted.” Staff ignored the message and rebooted their computer system, which then crashed. Ideal News says the next day, unknown persons from London called the hotel four … Continue reading

Nine takeaways from the 15 January 2019 al Shabaab attack on the dusitD2 hotel and office complex

These takeaways come from Muir Analytics’ full report on the dusitD2 hotel and business compound attack posted here. First, the hotel was the focal point of the attack. The terrorists applied considerable violence against the hotel’s guests and staff. They inflicted enough damage to cause the hotel to close for four and a half months to repair and renovate, plus rebrand its food and beverage venues. The attackers had a considerable amount of weaponry cached in the hotel, and their hotel room was the site of their final stand. Second, tactically, the attack was effective. Al Shabaab had adequate intelligence on the target, and it sent enough fighters carrying the right weaponry to facilitate the temporary takeover of portions of the hotel and office complex and inflict high casualties. This is to be expected, however, from such a highly experienced and successful insurgent … Continue reading

14 February 2019, Embassy Suites Hotel, Des Moines, Iowa, settles rape case, security negligence obvious

The Chicago Tribune reported on 14 February 2019 that hotel companies Atrium TRS III (Atrium Hospitality) and Hammons Inc settled out of court a rape case from April 2014 that occurred in their Embassy Suites Hotel in Des Moines, Iowa. According to Business Wire, the hotel was originally a John Q. Hammons Hotels & Resorts property. It was later taken over by Atrium Hospitality, but legal problems have plagued property ownership and management issues, says the Springfield Business Journal. Atrium Hospitality’s website says it is a full spectrum hotel company that engages in everything from hotel design, ownership, management, hospitality accounting, and other hotel consulting services. It has 82 properties in 29 states and works with hotel chains such as Hilton, Marriott, and InterContinental. The plaintiff’s attorneys brought effective pressure to bear on Hammons and Atrium by demonstrating a degree of security related negligence that … Continue reading

28 February 2019, Raid with car bomb in Mogadishu, Somalia

Quick overview and short takeaways: Reuters and scores of other outlets are reporting on this ongoing attack: 1) Al Shabaab exploded a massive car bomb outside the Hotel Maka Al-Mukarama in Mogadishu the evening of 28 Feb 2019. Its fighters then occupied the building next door, and Somalian forces are fighting to dislodge them as of 1 Mar. 2) So far, casualties are estimated at 30 killed and 80 wounded. 3) Al Shabaab, an Islamist jihadist insurgent group, has increased operations as of late in light of military pressure applied by the US, Kenya, and other regional militaries. 4) Al Shabaab on 15 Jan raided the 5 star Dusit hotel and business complex in Nairobi, Kenya, killing 21 and wounding scores. 5) Al Shabaab specializes in hotel attacks, and hotel companies around the world should readily understand its tactics. 6) Muir Analytics’ SecureHotel … Continue reading