The Marriott logo is seen in Washington, DC, on November 30, 2018. (AFP/NICHOLAS KAMM)
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The data stolen from the Marriott hotel empire in a massive breach is so rich and specific it could be used for espionage, identity theft, reputational attacks and even home burglaries, security experts say.Hackers stole data on as many as 500 million guests of former Starwood chain properties over four years including credit card and passport numbers, birthdates, phone numbers and hotel arrival and departure dates.It is one of the biggest data breaches on record. A Target breach in 2013 affected more than 41 million payment card accounts and exposed contact information for more than 60 million customers.The affected hotel brands were operated by Starwood before it was acquired by Marriott in 2016 .Marriott said it first detected until Sept. 8 but was unable to determine until last week what data had possibly been exposed – because the thieves used encryption to remove it in order to avoid detection.Marriott said it did not yet know how many credit card numbers might have been stolen.
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