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Top Story: Hilton hit by credit card breach

Top Story: Hilton hit by credit card breach
PHOTO COURTESY OF SHUTTERSTOCK

It was just earlier this week that we told about a data breach at Starwood hotels, which includes well-known chains such as Sheraton and Westin. Now, another major hotel chain has confirmed numerous reports that it's been the victim of a malware attack that put your credit card information at risk.

This attack lasted for months, including November and December last year. The attack resumed earlier this year.

But it was only yesterday that Hilton hotels confirmed that malware had been found on its POS systems. Those point-of-sales systems include cash registers, like those found at hotel registration desks, restaurants and stores.

Hilton hasn't said yet which POS systems were affected, or how many of its customers had their personal information breached. The data at risk did not include your address or PINs. However, it did include cardholders' names, card numbers, security codes and expiration dates.

In a statement, Hilton executives wrote: "Hilton Worldwide has identified and taken action to eradicate unauthorized malware that targeted payment card information in some point-of-sale systems." They also said the company took immediate action to improve its computer systems' security.

Hilton is the latest in a long list of companies that have been victimized by hackers, putting your personal information at risk. Perhaps most famously, Target's computer systems were hacked two years ago.

Plus, several other hotel chains have also been victimized by hackers. Those include Trump hotels and Mandarin Oriental hotels.

There is good news when it comes to protecting your card information when using POS transactions. The new EMV cards, with computer chips, are safer than traditional credit cards.

Where traditional cards store your information on the black strip on the back of it, which is easy for hackers to steal and use, EMV cards create individual codes for each transaction. Those transaction codes don't include your personal information. Plus, even if hackers stole a transaction number, those can only be used once, so it wouldn't do them any good.

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