HTNG Forms Workgroup To Create More Secure Credit Card Data Framework

 CHICAGO – At least sixteen major hotel groups from around the world plan to work together to develop an industry security framework for handling sensitive credit card data.

Intended to dramatically improve the security of credit card processing by and for hotels while 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.

Once defined, the Secure Payments Framework for Hospitality can be communicated by supporting hotels to their technology and distribution partners, management companies, franchisees, payment gateways, tokenization providers, and other parties. Interoperability standards will be developed (or existing standards enhanced) to support the framework. A key design consideration is that the framework should augment rather than replace existing tokenization approaches in use or in the process of implementation at several major hotel brands and in commonly used hotel systems.

Many of the world’s largest hotel companies have indicated their intention to participate in the effort to define the framework; others are now invited to join as the workgroup formally launches. Technology providers, distribution partners, and payment processors will not be able to participate directly in the framework development phase, but may engage with their customers who are represented on the workgroup to ensure that their interests are considered. They will also have the opportunity to participate in the actual development of solutions and standards in subsequent phases.

The effort will be structured as an HTNG workgroup, which will meet on a weekly basis to develop and document the framework in a white paper within approximately four months. The project will include the identification of specific efforts that may be needed to develop or adapt interface standards to support the framework. HTNG expects that these standards will be developed during the first half of 2012.