Nevada Gaming Control Board Site May Have Been Hacked

The Nevada Gaming Control Board (NGCB) site appears to have been the victim of a cyberattack. On Jan. 25, the possible NGCB hack was even listed in its Google results.

Below the Gaming Control Board — State of Nevada site listing, Google warned searchers on Jan. 25:

This site may be hacked.

Although the result for the page titled Nevada Gaming Control Board: Report a Cyber Attack didn’t bear the same warning beneath it, clicking on it yielded the same message:

This site can’t be reached

gaming.nv.gov took too long to respond.

Bonus emailed NGCB spokesman Michael Lawton, the cybersecurity office, and other NGCB representatives. No one replied on Jan. 25.

When Bonus called about the possible NGCB hack, a staffer said Lawton was in a meeting.

UPDATE: 1/29/2024

On Jan. 29, Google was no longer notifying searchers that the NGCB site might be hacked. So, Bonus clicked on the link and found a bare-bones site. It appears to be the “temporary website” the board announced that it was building on Jan. 25.

Meanwhile, attorney Kelci S. Binau informed Bonus on Jan. 29 that the Nevada Gaming Commission (NGC)  isn’t required to notify the NGCB within 72 hours about a possible cyberattack. The NGCB site also houses NGC. (However, the NGC does require that from online gambling operators.)

Binau told Bonus:

The NGC is not itself a ‘covered entity’ of those new regs so under those regs the NGC is not required to report/act.

UPDATE: 01/25/2024 — NGCB Speaks

At 8:07 p.m. on Jan. 25, NGCB posted on X that the site “had been compromised.” The regulator chose to prevent more problems by taking the site down.

Lawton also sent Bonus the post:

What Other Posts Said on Jan. 25

Based on various reports and social media mentions, the possible NGCB hack appears to be a day old.

NGCB Hack Also Takes Commission Offline

Google shows a possible NGCB hackThe NGCB is the state’s gaming regulator, overseen by the Nevada Gaming Commission (NGC). The information about the NGC is housed on the NGCB site.

So, online gambling operators looking up NGC rules implemented on Jan. 1, 2023, about “cybersecurity requirements” will have to look on other sites. Bonus couldn’t access the regulations on the gaming.nv.gov site on Jan. 25.

However, Bonus found the rules that attorney Kelci S. Binau summarized on Nov. 16, 2023, for the Clark County Bar Association.

Clark County houses Las Vegas.

Binau wrote:

The new regulations require covered entities to take ‘all appropriate steps’ to ‘secure and protect’ not only their own ‘information systems,’ their own ‘records’ and their own ‘operations,’ but also secure and protect the ‘personal information’ of their patrons and employees. Nev. Gaming Comm’n Regs. 5.260(1). The NGC’s amendment reflects its concern about cybersecurity over the past few years as cyber-attacks continue to increase in frequency and the range of businesses targeted has broadened.

Indeed, in September 2023 alone, three gaming entities were the target of cyberattacks. Caesars Entertainment (Caesars Entertainment 42,96 -1,17%), and MGM Resorts International (MGM Resorts International 42,96 -0,74%) experienced criminal attacks on their systems. While it’s not on MGM’s system, BetMGM also endured a cyberattack. BetMGM is the online gambling joint venture of MGM and Entain (Entain PLC 916,80 +0,42%).

The first step operators must take is to notify the NGCB within 72 hours of a cyberattack, wrote Binau, who is now the general counsel for Global Gaming Women.

However, who should the regulator notify about the possible NGCB hack? Author’s note: Please refer to the Jan. 29 update above.

The US Attorney’s Office for the District of Nevada didn’t immediately respond to a voicemail Bonus left with its “media point of contact” on Jan. 25.

About the Author

Heather Fletcher

Heather Fletcher

Heather Fletcher is Lead Writer at Bonus, concentrating on online casino coverage. She specializes in breaking news, legislative coverage, and gambling marketing strategy overviews. To reach Heather with a news tip, email [email protected].
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