The beginning of the week saw the hotel and casino behemoth MGM Resorts International reveal that some of its online systems had been affected by a cybersecurity issue that caused disruptions for customers, especially in Las Vegas. According to cybersecurity experts, the company probably became the victim of a pervasive cyberattack.
The casino and hotel chain has neither shared any details on the aforementioned disruptions nor disclosed the exact timing of when the issue began or was detected but said that law enforcement authorities had been informed about the problem. MGM Resorts issued a statement informing its users that it had taken swift action to protect its data and systems. As part of these actions, certain systems had to be shut down.
MGM Resorts’ website was down Monday evening. Furthermore, some Facebook group users stated that the slot machines of the company were not operational and that some customers experienced problems accessing their hotel rooms at the company’s resorts.
The company also shared on its social media channels that an investigation of the matter was still ongoing.
According to media reports, a large number of electronic gambling machines had gone offline and some customers were unable to make reservations, charge anything to their rooms, or use their digital room keys.
MGM Resorts Has Still Not Revealed Details about September 12th Cybersecurity Issue
As part of a statement that was officially issued late Monday night by the operator, MGM Resorts claimed that its resorts continue to deliver their services, including gaming, dining, and entertainment options. The hotel and casino chain thanked its customers for their patience and further noted that its guests were able to access their hotel rooms, while the front desk staff was ready to help them with whatever they needed.
At the time, it was unclear how many people had been affected by the alleged cybersecurity attack that caused the aforementioned disruptions. MGM Resorts is one of the largest casino and hotel companies in the country, with thousands of hotel rooms in Las Vegas, across a number of properties, including MGM Grand Las Vegas, the Bellagio, Mandalay Bay, and Aria.
As explained by the University of Nevada’s associate professor of information systems and cybersecurity Greg Moody, the occurrence of cybersecurity issues usually means that an individual or a group of hackers has attacked the network of the company. In this particular case, the attacker/s might have used a gap in MGM Resorts’ cybersecurity systems to take them down.
Such attacks are usually initiated by attackers who seek a profit, with hackers normally stealing certain data from a company and holding it until the company pays a ransom. In other cases, attackers prefer to sell the stolen data in an underground online marketplace where buyers seek sensitive data that will allow them to steal other people’s identity and use it.