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Office of the Vermont Attorney General

Vermont Leads Multistate Investigation of Hotel Booking Company’s 2017 Data Breach

December 23, 2020

State of Vermont to Receive $397,000 as Settlement

Contact: Charity R. Clark, Chief of Staff, 802-828-3171

Attorney General T.J. Donovan, along with the attorneys general of 27 states, has entered into a settlement with Sabre Corporation that resolves an investigation into the 2017 data breach of Sabre Hospitality Solutions’ hotel booking system. The breach exposed the data of approximately 1.3 million credit cards. The settlement requires a payment of $2.4 million, of which the State of Vermont will receive $397,000 and injunctive relief.

“When a business relies on a vendor, it should be able to trust that the vendor will adequately protect its data, and if it does have a breach, respond appropriately,” said Attorney General Donovan.

Sabre Hospitality Solutions, a business segment of Sabre Corporation, operates the SynXis Central Reservation system, which facilitates the booking of hotel reservations. SynXis connects business travel coordinators, travel agencies, and online travel booking companies on one end to Sabre’s hotel customers on the other. On June 6, 2017, Sabre informed its hotel customers of a data breach that had occurred between August 2016 and March 2017, which the business had disclosed in a 10-Q SEC filing the month before. Notice to consumers was provided by the hotels, resulting in some notices being issued as late as 2018, and some consumers receiving multiple notices stemming from the same breach.

The settlement requires Sabre to include language in future contracts that specifies the roles and responsibilities of both parties in the event of a breach. It also requires Sabre to try to determine whether its customers have provided notice to consumers, and to provide the attorneys general a list of all the customers that it has notified. In addition, the settlement requires that Sabre implement and maintain a comprehensive information security program, implement a written incident response and data breach notification plan, implement specific security requirements, and undergo a third-party security assessment.

Attorney General Donovan led the investigation into Sabre with the attorneys general of Arkansas, Connecticut, Illinois, Alaska, Arizona, Florida, Hawaii, Indiana, Iowa, Louisiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Virginia, and Washington.

More information about security breaches, consumer protection, and protecting yourself from identity theft can be found at ago.vermont.gov/cap.

A copy of the settlement can be found here.

Last modified: December 23, 2020