My IHG Account Hacked and Points Stolen - What Happened - Running with Miles
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My IHG Account Hacked and Points Stolen – What Happened

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Written by Charlie

My IHG account was hacked and thousands of points stolen. Here is what happened and what IHG did to take care of this fraudulent issue with my points.

Advertiser Disclosure

This is something that others have had happen before and just recently happened to me. My IHG account had been hacked and points for a stay stolen. Here is what happened and how IHG handled it.

My IHG Account Hacked and Points Stolen

Background

Of all the hotel programs, IHG points are ones that I use the least. I primarily keep them for PointBreaks hotel stays and so only have about 70,000 points with them.

I decided to redeem them recently for a stay in New York City (thanks to Hyatt’s high point costs for all their hotels in NYC, I prefer to not burn those points there). When I logged in, I found my account down about 40,000 points. I was confused and checked the activity and found that they had been redeemed for a NYC IHG hotel back in October!

My IHG Account Hacked

The room had been reserved with points from my account the day before the reserved stay. The person booked a room for that next day and obviously changed the e-mail address so I wasn’t notified of it. It had happened about 2 months before I even noticed it.

What I Did About the IHG Account Hack

I immediately reached out to IHG via their chat and was told that I needed to e-mail IHG directly to address the issue. The e-mail address I was told to use was HI-GuestRelations@ihg.com. I e-mailed them a brief e-mail, specifying what had happened along with the hotel that had been booked, when it was made and told them where I had been when it was accomplished (Europe) and that I needed the points back.

E-Mail Back-and-Forth

I received a response from IHG 3 days later. I was asked to provide the following information:

In the meantime, please verify the following details:

Original mailing address on file
Original e-mail address on file
Original phone number
Last IHG hotel stay

After giving that information, they wrote back the day after I suppled the information and said this: I heard an update from our specialty team that conducted the investigation to your account and they have declined to disclose the information with regards to the unauthorized redemption. The good news is that we will be able to return the lost points to your account.

The Resolution

They offered to give me the points back in my account (and have me make a new pin) or they would create a new IHG account for me and transfer points, status, promotional offers, all qualifying activity, etc.

This was just yesterday so I am waiting now for them to send me my new PIN and the information for the account.

I was quite pleased that it only took 2 days from the time I started speaking with them to get a resolution. Obviously, that was likely helped by whatever their investigation found on the person who had booked the room (someone that had no contact with me).

Hopefully, this will help you if your IHG account is hacked. Unfortunately, IHG account hacks are not out of the realm of possibility, thanks to IHG’s usage of 4 digit PIN codes. Hopefully, they will implement a more secure code system at some point. In the meantime, I am just thankful that I am getting my points back.

Editorial Note - Opinions expressed here are author's alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, hotel, airline, or other entity. This content has not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of the entities included within the post.

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About the author

Charlie

Charlie has been an avid traveler and runner for many years. He has run in marathons around the world for less than it would cost to travel to the next town - all as a result of collecting and using miles and points. Over the years, he has flown hundreds of thousands of miles and collected millions of miles and points.
Now he uses this experience and knowledge to help others through Running with Miles.

10 Comments

  • IHG is a complete joke. Same happened to my account 2 years ago and almost 200k points were stolen. IHG was not that keen to give points back but after several calls and email exchanges they agreed to depost the points back. They also changed my 4 digit PIN to a new one which in today’s world is ridiculous.

  • My wife’s acct was hacked last Sept. I found out by getting a redemption notice from AwardWallet. Someone booked a room in West Yellowstone! They cancelled her acct, got new one and all points back. Annoying, but cleared up.

  • I am an IHG Royal Ambassador and had about 1 Mn points in my account when about a year ago, someone redeemed 500k points to buy laptop/iPad from my account. There was no notification to my email I’d either. Since I check my acccount balance every couple of days, I noticed it within 48 hours of the incident and notified IHG who credited the points back. I asked to change over my IHG number since I wasn’t sure the account would not be breached again. Flip side to the whole episode on points gathering front, since the switch over to my new account, Accelerate offers which earlier targetted me for 150K/200K points gathering promos have dropped to a very mundane 40K type of Accelerate promos. Inspire of me writing to them, they could never fix their offers to take note of my previous stay patterns and volumes. Hence, instead of 100+ Intercon nights that I accumulated over last 2 years, I reduced my loyalty to 10 odd nights this year and took my stays elsewhere since the new bonus offers just didn’t make sense. The whole point is that once such breaches occur, they should have a way to carry forward previous stay info or stay patterns to the new account to promote and retain loyalty, instead of just transferring the points to new account and making their IT systems and customer feel that the relationship has started from ground zero again!

    • Thanks! It just seems to be one of those weeks – dealing with Emirates now with my lost bag and also dealing with Amazon over a lost item they don’t seem to want to just resend and then dealing with banks here as I try to wrap up things before heading back to the US again! It never rains but pours! 🙂 Have a great Christmas!

  • My account got hacked today. 593,000 points redeemed was all the information I could see. I reported and received the same request for information email you specified. My account is currently blocked. Based on your post and other feedback, I am confident that I will receive the points and would not mind at all to get a new IHG account number to start over with the Accelerate promotions.

  • This happened to me, too, just recently. I contacted them during the middle of the MLK weekend, and just wrote to them to find out what’s happening. Maybe when I get my points back, I will just redeem them for merchandise, and then quit them. I like Holiday Inn Express hotels, but there are plenty of other places to stay where customer loyalty accounts are far better protected from hackers.

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