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Booking.com Cyber Threats, BA's Deaf Support & Notre Dame Reopens

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In travel news for December 13, 2023 we talk about the increased cyber threats to users of booking.com, British Airways makes travel easierfor hearing impaired travelers, and the reopening of the iconic Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris is set.

Booking.com Users Targeted by Increased Cyber Scams

Booking.com users are facing escalating cyber attacks, with hackers on the dark web actively seeking hotel login details, offering up to $2,000 for this information. These cyber-criminals gain access to hotel administration portals, allowing them to view and manipulate customer reservations. Utilizing a malware they dupe hotel staff through deceptive emails, leading to unauthorized access to Booking.com’s system. The hackers then pose as hotel staff in the official app, tricking guests into transferring money directly to them. This issue has globally impacted travelers, with reports from the UK, Indonesia, Singapore, Greece, Italy, Portugal, the US, and the Netherlands. Booking.com is actively working on countermeasures, including increased awareness and enhanced security protocols, but the situation highlights the need for heightened vigilance among travelers using online booking platforms.

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British Airways Enhances Deaf Accessibility with SigncodeUK

British Airways has partnered with SigncodeUK to enhance its service offerings for the Deaf and hard-of-hearing community. This collaboration aims to provide equal access to information through signed video content, available pre-travel and onboard. The first video, featuring British Airways' first Deaf Customer Experience Agent, gives an overview of the airline's services, from booking to in-flight entertainment. Another video, due by the end of 2023, will focus on onboard safety procedures. These videos are accessible through links or QR codes. Additionally, British Airways offers a minicom system and collaborates with SignLive for British Sign Language support in customer engagement centers. This initiative is part of British Airways' commitment to accessibility and inclusivity, ensuring that Deaf and hard-of-hearing travelers have a seamless and informed travel experience.

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Notre Dame 2024 Reopening: A Resilient Revival

The iconic Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris, France, is set to reopen at the end of 2024, a testament to resilience and cultural preservation following the devastating fire in 2019. The extensive restoration, which began in earnest in 2022, aims to return the cathedral to its original 12th-century glory, including the reinstallation of the 19th-century spire. This symbol of revival is a significant part of the reconstruction, involving around 1,000 workers daily. Although the cathedral will reopen in 2024, restoration work will continue into 2025. Parallel to the physical restoration, cultural initiatives such as exhibitions at the cathedral's site and the Louvre offer insights into the rich history and ongoing efforts to preserve this Parisian landmark. The reopening of Notre Dame is not merely a restoration of an architectural marvel but also a celebration of global cultural heritage and human determination.

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