On March 2, 2020, Carnival Corp. announced that two of its cruise lines were impacted by a Carnival cruise line data breach. Unknown numbers of employees and customers of Princess line and Holland America line may have had their complete identities compromised, including names, addresses, Social Security numbers, government-issued travel numbers and more. The Carnival cruise line data breach appears to have occurred as a result of a targeted email attack that included deceptive communications, which are most likely part of a phishing attack.

In a phishing attack, scammers send out messages to hundreds or even thousands of email accounts, hoping to snare a few victims. In the case of these messages, the company’s statement appears to say the emails were directed at employees.

Spearphishing, as it is known, is a specific type of phishing attempt that happens when someone targets employees within a company with emails that look like real business-related messages. The goal is to trick the employee into downloading harmful software, sending over sensitive information, providing usernames and passwords or even transferring money to the scammers.

Carnival is taking steps to help those who have been affected by the Carnival cruise line data breach. While their investigators have not discovered any signs that the stolen information has been used maliciously, the company is offering free credit monitoring for the victims.

Also, anyone who is affected by a data breach can take the following steps:

  1. Update your passwords on all of your sensitive accounts.
  2. Place a freeze on your credit report by contacting the three credit reporting agencies.
  3. Monitor your accounts for any signs of unusual activity.

Anyone whose information was exposed in the Carnival cruise line data breach can also contact the Identity Theft Resource Center’s toll-free number at 888.400.5530 or via the website’s live chat feature to speak with an expert advisor. This resource can help you come up with an action plan.

The ITRC’s free ID Theft Help App will also let you keep record of your case steps and provide you with proof of what actions you have taken. This is important since some recent data breach settlements have required victims to provide proof for cash payouts.


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