Digital Forensics – A Hospitality Case Study

SOClogix > Digital Forensics – A Hospitality Case Study
A group of people conducting digital forensics.

Project Details

  • Uncovering Data Theft in the Hospitality Industry
  • Large Hospitality Firm located near Baltimore, MD
  • December 2023

Digital Forensics Triumph: Uncovering Data Theft in the Hospitality Industry

In this case study, we explore SOClogix’s pivotal role in uncovering a sophisticated attempt at corporate espionage within a renowned hospitality organization based in Maryland. Employing cutting-edge digital forensic techniques, the SOClogix team was able to meticulously trace the unauthorized dissemination of sensitive customer information by departing staff members. This investigation not only thwarted an immediate threat to the client’s competitive edge but also set a precedent for legal recourse, culminating in a substantial six-figure settlement. Through this narrative, we highlight the intricacies of the digital forensics process and the profound impact of timely, expert intervention in protecting corporate assets.

The Client

SOClogix was approached by a distinguished hospitality client located in Maryland, acclaimed for their exceptional customer service and captivating atmosphere provided to guests. Amidst growing competition in the industry, the client became concerned about a series of abrupt resignations among their customer service staff. Suspecting potential corporate data theft, they sought the expertise of SOClogix to conduct comprehensive digital forensic investigations.

The Challenge

The challenge was to assess whether these resignations were linked to the unauthorized transfer of proprietary information or other forms of corporate espionage, posing a significant threat to their competitive standing and operational integrity.

The Digital Forensic Process

SOClogix employed a rigorous, step-by-step approach adhering to industry-leading standards and best practices in digital forensics. Our methodology ensures thorough analysis, evidence preservation, and adherence to legal and ethical guidelines.

1. Initial Assessment and Planning:
Upon engagement, SOClogix initiated a preliminary assessment to understand the scope and depth of the investigation required. This phase aligns with the guidelines the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) set forth in its publication on Digital Forensics (NIST Special Publication 800-86).

2. Evidence Acquisition:
SOClogix employed advanced techniques for securing and forensically acquiring digital evidence, ensuring data integrity is maintained per ISO/IEC 27037 standards. This involved creating bit-by-bit copies of hard drives, capturing memory dumps, and securely obtaining email and access log records without altering original data.

3. Analysis:
Our team proceeded with a detailed analysis using forensic tools and methodologies.

This included:

  • Email Analysis: Examination of email headers, body content, and attachments to identify suspicious activities. SOCloigx analyzed timestamps, source IP addresses, and patterns that suggest unauthorized data exfiltration.
  • Log Analysis: Scrutinizing system, access, and event logs to trace unauthorized or abnormal activities. The focus was on timestamps, user IDs, and event types that indicate malicious behaviour

4. Documentation and Reporting:

SOClogix maintained detailed documentation throughout the investigation. Our final report to the client included a comprehensive analysis, findings, and actionable insights.

Digital Forensics
E-mail Analysis
Log Analysis

The Result


Discovery of Stolen Data

The SOClogix forensic team was able to discover several instances of hosts copying customer data to their accounts in an attempt to retain customer data after employment.


Closing Security Gaps

During the forensic analysis, several security gaps were discovered by the SOClogix forensic team that the client and SOClogix were able to remediate to prevent further theft.


Large Settlement from a competitor

The client was able to receive a large 6 figure settlement from the Maryland courts based on information discovered during the forensic services provided by SOClogix.

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