Intended to dramatically improve the security of credit card processing by and for hotels while significantly reducing costs, the effort has been chartered as a working group of Hotel Technology Next Generation (HTNG). HTNG is a non-profit trade association that has developed solutions and standards in use throughout the hospitality industry, including interface standards for credit card processing and security. Hotel credit card transactions are more difficult to secure than in other industries. During the hotel reservation process, sensitive data must often flow across systems controlled by several different companies -- and must be stored for weeks or months, until the guest departs and the final bill has been settled. Each company in the reservation process typically uses a different approach to securing sensitive credit card data. As a result, standard security approaches such as tokenization, which can provide excellent security when a single company controls the systems, cannot easily be used for transactions that move across systems controlled by multiple companies, as routinely occurs with hotels. Tokenized (secure) card numbers typically cannot be deciphered by anyone other than the company that created them. This means that systems must transfer actual credit card data instead, exposing systems at both ends of each transfer to increased risk of hacking and theft. Get the full story at