Published: November 13, 2020 on our newsletter Security Fraud News & Alerts Newsletter.
As if the travel and particularly the cruise industry hasn’t been hit hard enough during the coronavirus pandemic, Carnival Cruise Lines has now been dealt another huge shot across the bow. The company announced recently that it was the victim of a data breach. The illegally accessed customer and employee data may have included names, addresses, dates of birth, contact numbers, social security numbers, financial account information, and passport numbers.
Per Carnival’s statement, it “detected unauthorized third-party access to portions of the company’s information technology systems.” Further, its personnel shut down the intrusion, restored operations, and prevented additional unauthorized access.
A cybersecurity company has been employed to help with investigations. Law enforcement has also been notified. There is no reason, the company claims, to think anyone has used the information in a fraudulent manner. However, it’s always a good plan to take immediate action to protect yourself.
Of course, we don’t yet know how the intruder came aboard, but it very well could have been via phishing. After all, the lures are very enticing these days. So always keep that periscope focused on attempted attacks. If you receive an email with a link or attachment, turn on that cyber skepticism and be 100% sure you really want to reel it in. If you don’t know the sender, aren’t expecting a link or attachment, or just can’t be sure it shouldn’t be thrown back to the sea, don’t click it. Most of the time, those phish are not legal and you don’t really want them anyway. The damage here is not merely a citation from the Department of Fish & Game.
Phishing attempts can also come via text or SMS. So be on the lookout for those too. Remember that your financial institution and government agencies, among others, will not initiate contact via email or text. They’ll send you a letter in via the U.S. Postal Service.
If any message you get, regardless of how it arrives, gives some sense of impending doom if you don’t take quick action, consider it suspect and don’t click until you take some time to check it out. Contact the sender completely independently of any message you may receive to ensure legitimacy. Don’t simply “reply” or phone a number that’s in the message.
Carnival have stated that they have been working as quickly as possible to notify the affected victims. It expects to have this completed by mid-December. Credit monitoring will be offered and if you are on the victim list, take advantage of that service.
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