Enhancing Data Privacy and Security in Hospitality

In the hospitality industry, detailed guest information serves as a significant asset. This information powers the creation of loyalty programs, effective marketing strategies, and the development of appealing properties and services. Traditionally, hotel brands claimed total ownership of this data, often overlooking the rights of hotel owners and even the guests themselves. However, the emergence of stringent data protection laws worldwide has challenged this perspective.

A Paradigm Shift in Data Ownership

Previously, data ownership attitudes have been transformed by regulations like the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation, the California Consumer Protection Act, and the California Privacy Rights Act. These laws dictate that personal data collection is only permissible with the individual’s consent. This shift signifies that guests, not brands, own their personal information and decide who can collect and use it, retaining the power to limit or revoke this right.

Traditional Perspectives on Data Security and Privacy

In the past, data security and privacy were seen as any other component in the hospitality business – a cost shouldered by the owner, even when they have minimal control over operations. For instance, employment costs – selection, hiring, training, and dismissal of hotel employees – are managed by the hotel manager, but the financial responsibility rests on the owner.

Commonly, management agreements state that only when the management company itself, not the on-site general manager, acts with gross negligence or willful misconduct, will the manager bear any of these costs. The rationale behind this is that such costs are simply part of doing business.

The Distinctive Nature of Data Privacy and Security

However, when it comes to data privacy and security, this rationale falls short. Owners rarely have access to the collection or use of a guest’s personal information. Most management agreements stipulate that if an owner does access any guest data, it can only be used for hotel operations. Conversely, managers and brands frequently use guest data for their own purposes, including marketing other properties and services.

Moreover, owners have virtually no control over the collection, storage, use, or sharing of guest data. This control is almost exclusively held by the brand or manager, either directly or through third parties, who may not even be known to the owner. Owners should recognize that data collection and use is an enterprise-wide process, and managers are the only ones capable of implementing effective and compliant systems.

Addressing Data Security Concerns with OpsTechPro

OpsTechPro is crafted to assist the hospitality industry in navigating the complexities of data security and privacy. Our state-of-the-art asset management system helps properties maintain a secure environment that adheres to applicable privacy and security laws. By facilitating streamlined operations, OpsTechPro empowers hospitality professionals to concentrate on delivering exceptional guest experiences without compromising data security.

Empowering Owners to Take Action

Owners must engage in strategic steps to balance the equation. Firstly, owners must ensure their own data privacy and security practices are up to the mark, creating a data-secure environment that complies with all relevant privacy and security laws.

Making data privacy a core value of your hotel not only satisfies regulatory requirements but also fosters customer trust and loyalty. Various studies have indicated that consumers trust organizations that respect their privacy concerns and protect their data. Hotels that can showcase robust data privacy and security measures are more likely to earn customer loyalty in a competitive market.

Owners should also demand that brands and managers consider data privacy a core value. Since owners have limited control over guests’ personal information, agreements should clarify that this is the responsibility of the manager and brand. This focus will benefit not only hotel owners but also the brands themselves, motivating them to invest and put in the necessary effort.

Share this post

Follow us :

Recent posts :

We're Here to Help

Before You Go
Let Us Know What’s on Your Mind.