Cybersecurity Breaches at MGM Resorts and Caesars Entertainment: Ocean’s 13-Style Digital Heist
By Mack Jackson, Jr.
In the fast-paced digital age, the security of sensitive data is paramount for every industry, and the recent cybersecurity incidents at MGM Resorts and Caesars Entertainment, both in Las Vegas, underscore this imperative. Both high-profile cases have served as a stark reminder that even well-prepared organizations can fall prey to cyberattacks, causing significant financial loss and jeopardizing customer trust.
On September 22, 2023, MGM Resorts concluded a 10-day computer system shutdown in a preemptive effort to secure its data following a cyberattack. While specific details have not been publicly disclosed, the ramifications are profound. Preliminary estimates suggest that the shutdown may have cost the MGM up to $8 million per day, totaling a staggering $80 million in cumulative losses.
Caesars Entertainment also came under a cyberattack on September 7. While its casino and online operations remained functional, the company needed help to assure the security of the personal information of tens of millions of its customers.
The Cost and the Vulnerability
The impacts of these attacks extend beyond monetary losses. For MGM Resorts, the cyberattack compromised several vital functions, including hotel reservations and credit card processing. Some resort services like dining and entertainment remained operational. Likewise, the disclosure from Caesars about the insecurity of customer data poses a potential PR crisis and long-term damage to brand trust.
In both instances, experts have noted the exposure of critical cybersecurity weaknesses, challenging the perception that casinos are invulnerable data fortresses.
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