MGM Resorts International, a well-known name in the world of hotels and casinos, has experienced a cybersecurity incident.
According to a post on X (formerly Twitter), the incident caused trouble for critical parts of the company, including its main website, online bookings and in-casino services such as ATMs, slot machines and card payment machines.
“MGM Resorts recently identified a cybersecurity issue affecting some of the Company’s systems,” reads the post. In response, the firm launched an investigation and took steps to protect its systems, which included shutting down some of its operations.
Erich Kron, a cybersecurity expert at KnowBe4, raised a red flag, saying that the incident looks like a ransomware attack.
“It’s clear that a significant number of systems have been impacted, leaving guests and customers in a difficult position while clearly impacting operations across the resort portfolio.”
Kron also warned that customers should be careful when dealing with anyone claiming to be from MGM Resorts, as cyber-criminals could use stolen information to trick people.
“It is important that they stay alert and cautious whenever dealing with someone claiming to be with the resort because if the customer information has been impacted, cyber-criminals can use it to create persuasive emails or attacks through text messages or even phone calls,” Kron said.
Ryan McConechy, the chief technology officer at Barrier Networks, explained that shutting down systems is a standard move when organizations have extensive, complicated networks. But this kind of downtime is expensive.
“For every minute the gaming floor was down, MGM was losing money. Likewise, with reservations and their websites still being down, the company continues to suffer massive financial losses,” McConechy added.
“Understandably, this may be to prevent active attackers pivoting or malware spreading, but when organizations segment their networks effectively, this scale of downtime can usually be avoided.”
MGM Resorts now faces uncertainty as they work to recover from this cybersecurity breach. The full extent of the attack is still unclear. Infosecurity has reached out to the company for further information about the incident but has not received a response at this time.
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