These are the Droids You’re Looking For: ChatGPT and the Hospitality Industry

ChatGPT, the large language model (LLM) recently debuted by OpenAI, has taken the world by storm. It has been the subject of widespread public discussion and quickly skyrocketed to over 100 million users within two months of its launch. 

The idea of human-like artificial intelligence (AI) chatbots replacing human activities is extremely provocative and controversial. Will AI herald a new era of frictionless communication and personalized online experiences? Or will AI replace the human element of hospitality and bring new security risks? 

This article will attempt to cut through the noise. Here’s what you need to know: 

About ChatGPT 

ChatGPT is a machine learning tool that uses natural language prompts to engage in conversation. It uses statistical methods to predict response text based on a large database of language. With a huge library of information gathered from the internet, it can craft replies that appear human-like and authoritative.  

ChatGPT has shown expansive capabilities and an uncanny ability to capture the intent of its prompts. From explaining quantum theory in the style of Snoop Dogg to writing a sitcom series about Corgis, the tool can surprisingly effective. It is also quite intelligent—there are reports that ChatGPT is capable of independently passing law school exams, medical licensing tests, and even the final exam for an MBA from the Wharton School

Since ChatGPT is free (with a paid “Chat GPT Plus” option available for $20/month) and capable of tackling any subject before it, it seems that it is only a matter of time before it—or similar tools in the future—become common in the hospitality industry. 

In fact, it might surprise you to learn that some hoteliers have already adopted sophisticated AI tools in their day-to-day operations. 

Robots & AI in Hotels 

Robots have been used in the industry since at least 2014 when Aloft hotels deployed the robotic butler A.L.O. at its Cupertino property. It wasn’t long before more hotels began employing robot staff to simplify room deliveries and offer basic concierge.   

In particular, the Yotel chain invested heavily in robots and tailored its brand to embrace the creative use of technology in the hospitality space. Guests can enjoy a fully automated experience from check-in to check-out, including their robo-cleaning package. During the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, their Boston location became the first in the world to implement robotic UVD light disinfection technology, autonomously sanitizing public areas and cabins.   

Sophisticated AI systems have also been developed to bolster the guest experience in hotels. In 2016, the Hilton McLean in Virginia introduced Connie, a robot concierge led by IBM’s artificial intelligence platform. The two-foot-tall crew member, sporting the computing power of IBM’s Jeopardy-winning Watson, provides guests with directions and local restaurant recommendations.   

However, robotic integration at hotels has not been entirely smooth. In fact, Japan’s Henn na Hotel, the world’s first robot-led establishment, has already announced one round of layoffs, firing more than half of its automated staff due to consistent malfunction and expensive repair.   


Robotics and AI tools like ChatGPT are undoubtedly cool, but what do they mean for your business? Here are VENZA’s predictions for the near future. 

1. New opportunities for automated guest interaction.
Generative AI has the potential to make old school “chatbots” a positive experience for both hoteliers and guests. Smart LLMs will be able to provide guests intelligent answers to a range of questions from concierge services, help desk, booking, and customer service. This is a win-win as, over time, this can free up your staff for other tasks. Be aware that this may raise customer expectations, so your organization should stay ahead of the trend. 

2. But, don’t plan on replacing your human staff anytime soon.
Despite the promise and hype, LLMs are a long way from being able to independently satisfy many mission-critical tasks. It can be glitchy and often gets basic facts wrong. This is especially true when casual users do not craft their prompts carefully. It is best to think of it as a supplement, rather than a substitute, to your existing customer service tools—at least for now. 

3. Phishing attempts will become more sophisticated
Gone are the days of phishing scams written in broken English with obvious tells of nefarious intent. Next-generation phishing attempts are already using ChatGPT’s writing skills to create more convincing emails. This could act as a “force multiplier” for threat actors. ChatGPT’s intelligent writing that uses open-source information to create message context, could amp up spear phishing attempts as well.  

Fortunately, ChatGPT could have some helpful anti-phishing functions as well. Some have suggested that it be used for security awareness training, threat intelligence reporting, and forensic investigations.  

Time will tell which direction the pendulum ultimately swings. 

4. ChatGPT-written malware will be worth monitoring
As one of ChatGPT’s relative strengths is coding, it should be no surprise that cybercriminals have already begun exploring the use of the tool to write functional malware. Although ChatGPT has guardrails intended to prevent its use for such purposes, they appear to be easily bypassed. This will decrease barriers to access for small, unsophisticated actors (referred to be some as “script kiddies”) and potentially increase the risk of attacks. For the moment, hoteliers can take solace in ChatGPT’s limits (much of the code it writes is apparently flawed), but this is a trend worth monitoring. 

AI tools are already on the radar of cybersecurity agencies like the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). For their take and recommendations, check out the recently released Artificial Intelligence Risk Management Framework. We’ll continue to post additional resources on the VENZA Echo as they become available. 

Moving Forward 

Tech advances like ChatGPT typically follow a familiar plotline. Once released, they are accompanied by hype and predictions of drastic change. Often, these promises go unrealized. 

With machine learning LLMs, however, the promise appears to be very real. As a category of application, rather than just a single tool, they have the potential to integrate into a range of activities and functions. As such, it’s likely that we’ll continue to increasingly hear about ChatGPT and similar AI platforms in the future. Hoteliers who stay informed and prepared will be best position to capture their benefits and mitigate their risks. 

Feeling overwhelmed? Don’t be. VENZA and CyberTek are here to help. Cybersecurity is complex, but in partnership with us, your company can get started in as little as one month. Get a live demonstration today by contacting our Customer Success team. 

Ready to elevate your game? Contact Sales to discuss signing up for our programs or adding new solutions to your contract. 

Take VENZA’s free Phishing Test to assess gaps in your human firewall today! 

Human Firewall

Training your personnel to recognize and report phishing attempts is essential to protecting your guests and their data. Get started by determining your risk and readiness level using this free tool