If you stayed at a Best Western hotel anytime since 2007 then your private information is now for sale to fraudsters all over the globe. Ouch.

According the Sunday Herald, an Indian hacker broke into the company's systems and downloaded information including "home addresses, telephone numbers, credit card details and place of employment." The heist is being called "one of the most audacious cyber-crimes ever."

Best Western is aware of the problem now of course, but their newfound awareness is way too late. I bet if they'd handled their security properly in the first place it would have cost them far less than $8 million - a paltry $1 per customer, whose trust they've now undoubtedly lost.

I'd have taken on the job of securing their data for a mere $4 million - plus expenses ;-)

Some advice here for travelers: A hotel doesn't need to know your home address nor where you work. So why give it to a hotel just to book a room? Give them your real zip code since that is often required to process a credit card transaction. But other than that, think carefully about what info you hand out because with all the data loss going on over the past few years it's glaringly apparent that almost nobody can be trusted to keep it secret and safe.