MGM Resorts is facing 'ongoing' cyber incident that sent reservation and booking systems offline

MGM Resorts is facing 'ongoing' cyber incident that sent reservation and booking systems offline

On Tuesday, March 17, 2020, individuals strolled along the path located in front of the Bellagio Resort & Casino, which is owned by MGM Resorts International, in Las Vegas, Nevada.

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MGM Resorts, which manages casinos and accommodations, has taken the decision to close several of its computer systems, including their website due to a problem with their cybersecurity. This announcement was made by the company on their social media account on Monday.

The first closure had a significant effect on almost every facet of the casino company's operations. The failure seemingly affected the reservation and booking systems, the hotel's electronic key card systems, and the casino's floors.

In reaction to the cyber security problem, the email systems of the business were seemingly shut down and are still unavailable.

The corporation announced that their casino floors are now available again since Monday night. However, their reservation systems, which work for a vast number of hotel rooms and restaurants, are still not operational. This issue persists even though news of the problem has been circulating for more than a day.

MGM manages numerous lodging options in Las Vegas and various states throughout America. Based on financial filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, the income generated from their Las Vegas hotel accommodations exceeds the revenue produced from their casinos. During the second financial quarter that ended on June 30th, MGM disclosed $706.7 million in revenue from their hotel rooms in Las Vegas. Whereas, they announced $492.2 million in casino revenue for the same time frame.

MGM wrote on X (formerly known as Twitter) that they immediately launched an inquiry with help from renowned external cybersecurity specialists. Furthermore, they informed the authorities and took decisive actions to secure their networks and sensitive information, which included turning off specific systems.

The FBI declared that they had knowledge about the incident that is currently happening, but no additional details were shared.

The shares of MGM witnessed a decline of approximately 2.4% on the closing of Monday.

MGM's website has been substituted with a web page suggesting customers to communicate with their hotels or casinos through telephone. The exact time of the disruption is uncertain, but a few social media users claimed that MGM's systems were not working since Sunday evening.

In the past, the company has faced issues with cybersecurity. A year ago, the personal information of over 10 million people who visited MGM hotels was leaked on a hacking platform. The company stated that this information was extracted from their systems in the summer of 2019.

It is not immediately apparent what actions the government will take beyond the involvement of the FBI. The government labeled the gaming and lodging industries as critical infrastructure within the "commercial facilities sector" back in 2003.

The Department of Homeland Security gave a warning in their 2015 plan specific to the industry that a big communication breakdown or a planned cyberattack could lead to major disruptions in the payment and fundamental tasks operations. It can also put customer and company data privacy at risk, impact the reputation and soundness of the organization, and cause significant legal and financial difficulties.

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