Hospitality - Hotels

Expand Your Hotel Wireless Network Capabilities Without Getting Hacked in the Process

By June 2, 2018 No Comments

Hotel guests want to be able to get online to:

  • Cast videos from their Netflix, Prime, or Hulu subscription
  • Check and send email
  • Video conference
  • Research attractions
  • Make reservations
  • Update social media
  • Stream music
  • Check flight status

And they want to do it all without making their personal information vulnerable to hackers, viruses, or malware. In the same way guests expect hot water and electricity, they expect to be able to use as much bandwidth as they want whenever they want because that’s what they do at home. You can’t blame them. The familiarity of online connections is part of what makes a hotel stay feel like home away from home. They feel safe at home. They want to feel safe in your hotel, too.

You make efforts to ensure guests are physically safe on your property: mopping wet surfaces, adding security cameras, hiring late night security guards, ensuring walkways and the parking lot are well lit, installing smoke detectors and fire sprinklers, etc. Why wouldn’t you do everything possible to keep guests’ digital identities secure as well?

Of course you want to provide those things for guests. It’s why you’re in the hospitality industry in the first place: to be hospitable. But you’re not sure you can enhance wireless connectivity and wireless security at the same time. The two seem to be mutually exclusive in your mind.

They don’t have to be. You can do both. Simultaneously. With one vendor.


Start with secure hardware

Not all access points (APs) are created equally. Use Samsung Networks wall plate APs in each guest room to minimize the number of users associated with each AP. Use Samsung enterprise indoor and outdoor APs to provide seamless handoffs across the entirety of the property, from the pool bar to the laundry room and everywhere in between.

Samsung Networks’ wall plate APs are engineered to provide in-room connectivity for multi-dwelling units. Outdoor APs are designed to withstand the elements and provide connection outside buildings on the property: balconies, rooftops, poolside, patios, gardens, etc. Indoor enterprise APs are engineered to function in high-density environments with multiple users, for those occasions when the lobby is full, the hotel is hosting a conference, or all of the staff need connectivity at the same time during peak seasons.

How that expands your wireless network capabilities:

  • In-room APs provide more consistent connectivity for guests because the signal doesn’t have to navigate structural interference like fire walls, stairwells, or elevator shafts.
  • Quality coverage throughout the property allows you to use technologies like IoT to help manage facilities and operations.

Manage the hotel wireless network with intelligent controllers

Artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) technologies, when incorporated into Wi-Fi network controllers, empower those controllers to act autonomously. They troubleshoot certain AP problems preemptively, meaning IT managers can handle more APs because they don’t have to troubleshoot them all manually.

More importantly for this particular discussion, though, the intelligent controllers can be configured to trigger a specific action when network security is threatened. Such machine learning technology staves off breaches before they can wreak havoc on the hotel or the guests using the wireless network.


Personal Area Networks (PAN)

You want your wireless network to distinguish between different types of users because different users will need it for different reasons. For example, management will use it more for operations, staff for communication, and guests for business, personal, and entertainment reasons. You don’t want a guest who is streaming a movie to monopolize bandwidth and interfere with operations or vice versa.

There are a couple of ways to segment the network: statically or dynamically. A static VLAN would segment all guests onto one SSID, making everyone susceptible to each other’s activity. That’s not the most secure option. Nor does it lend itself to a positive guest experience.

Dynamic VLAN (DVLAN) assigns a personal area network (PAN) to each guest, meaning their activities only affect them and not other guests. This is the more secure option. Additionally, it provides guests with a better connectivity experience since they don’t have to compete for bandwidth or deal with network failures caused by the activities of other guests. Personal information is removed securely when the guest checks out of the hotel.

Samsung Networks makes it possible to do what you didn’t think you could: expand your wireless network and keep personal information secure. Schedule a free consultation with one of our Wi-Fi experts today.

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