When we think of traveling for vacation and staying in a nice hotel, the thought of identity theft and our personal information being stolen rarely crosses our mind. Unfortunately, that’s exactly what happened to 10-million visitors of the MGM Grand Hotel and Casino. A recent data breach of the establishment’s information gave hackers a deep insight into the transactions and personal details about recent clients and visitors that stayed at the establishment.
The Good News
Although this hack may seem like nothing short of a horror story, investigators revealed that no financial information, credit card numbers or social security numbers were stolen during the breach. Officials believe that the hack may have affected numerous companies that work under the umbrella of the MGM Grand Hotel and Casino. While investigators are hesitant to release news on which businesses were directly attacked, customers should breathe a sigh of relief knowing their identities are relatively safe.
The Bad News
Even though the MGM was able to spare customers’ passwords and personal details, hackers were able to get some valuable information about the MGM client base. Data such as email addresses, full names, birthdays, phone numbers and home locations were extracted during the attack by the malicious attackers. What’s more shocking is that famous and powerful visitors to the MGM Grand Casino and Hotel — such as pop star Justin Bieber, military and government officials and the CEO of Twitter, Jack Dorsey — had their valuable data compromised.
The stolen data was posted on a forum dedicated to black-hat hacking. Black-hat hackers use their technical knowledge for personal and financial gain at the expense of others. Researchers were stunned when they found information related to Stephen Paddock, the man who committed a mass shooting at the MGM Grand on October 1, 2017, among the data.
Aftermath of the Attack
The MGM, FBI and cybersecurity officials are working around the clock to rectify the situation and learn what hackers used as an entry point for their attack. While this data breach may seem like a horrendous ordeal for everyone involved, it gives valuable insight into how systems work, and how professionals can improve security within the Las Vegas area.
Lou Rabon, a cybersecurity expert and CEO of Cyber Defense Group, exclaims this attack is representative of security measures in the modern era. According to Rabon, even the largest businesses on the planet still operate with poor security measures and do not understand how valuable their data may be to dangerous hackers. On a positive note, it seems that the MGM Hotel and Casino has revamped their security measures to thwart off would-be attackers in the future.