A few days ago, we reported on the MGM Cyberattack that has the company (and customers) reeling from the impact on its operations, and the situation is still not resolved, as reports from their properties show.
While MGM says publicly they are fully operational, the reality is really the total opposite as customers queue for hours to check-in at the hotel and wait forever to get a couple of dollars cashed out manually from a slot machine.
We’re not entering day five of this attack on MGM’s systems and at least as far as operations are concerned the company doesn’t seem to make much headway as it’s still a disaster on the property level to deal with hotel, gaming and F&B operations.
When all this began, guests reported that they were unable to enter guest rooms, complete check-in, slot machines were disabled and restaurant outlets couldn’t accept card payments, requiring guests to pay cash.
You can read up on my article from Tuesday here:
Now, that has somewhat changed to hour-long lineups for hotel check-in and how guests are required to deal with slot machines.
At this point, I don’t think that MGM is conducting its gaming operations in good faith and engages in rather deceptive business practices.
Talking about deceptive, here is their latest (two days old now) Twitter Update:
— MGM Resorts (@MGMResortsIntl) September 12, 2023
This is a complete lie!
The company is well aware that its slot machines are unable to distribute and cash out vouchers, and the ATM/Cash Dispensers on the casino floor are inoperable as well. Yet, there is no warning given to customers who enter the casino and insert cash into the slot machines. Customers who then wish to withdraw cash from the machine are forced to obtain assistance from an associate (Slot Attendant) in order to facilitate an in-person payment. This takes more than half an hour, in some cases even beyond an hour.
People have reported that hundreds, if not thousands, of customers, get so frustrated with the process and don’t have time to wait for this process to be completed that they are forced to leave their funds behind in the machine and leave. I wonder what will happen to these funds, are they going to the state after they’ve been accounted for?
At the same time, I wonder why not just play the money through and see if you hit something rather than leaving even a few dollars behind.
This has also attracted the attention of criminal elements to take advantage of the situation, prowling the casino floor and looking for slot machines with a somewhat decent amount of funds left and then claiming them from a slot attendant. Obviously, the casino has no resources to validate each of these cash-out transactions by CCTV.
The Gaming Control Board should mandate MGM to shut down all their slot operations under these circumstances or, at the very least, post a warning notice on each slot machine, informing customers of these circumstances.
As far as the hotels are concerned, there is no way in hell I’d stand several hours in a check-in line. IF the situation is that bad, I’d book another (non-MGM) hotel and then claim the money back from them later if there was an advance deposit either by contacting them and demanding a refund or via chargeback.
I checked pricing for tonight on Orbitz, and it looks rather normal across Las Vegas:
These are normal rates for the TI, Mirage (no longer MGM, it’s Hard Rock now), and the Hilton at Resorts World. Gotta love the MGM advertisement on the side. 😀
The best suggestion right now is to walk away from MGM properties until everything has been fully restored.
When Caesars suffered a similar cyber attack, they allegedly paid ransom money to the tune of 10-15 Million Dollars to the hackers. The exact amount is disputed, but there is a story going around that Caesars negotiated them down from their initial demands of 30 Million to less than half that amount. That was most likely a seasoned pro move after considering the numbers and impact on business, customers, and reputation.
The chaos at MGM Hotels, Resorts, and Casinos is now going into day five, and it has been a disaster on all fronts.
I’m really curious if MGM received the same kind of ransom request that Caesars got and if they are eventually willing to pay in order to get their properties back online. Let’s not forget that it might be much cheaper to pay than to let this go on for many more days or who knows how long with disabled gaming operations.
Even with some games on the casino floors online, word has spread that it’s a pain to deal with anything cash-related when it comes to MGM right now, and I personally wouldn’t put any money into a slot machine there right now. They can’t even track your play with MGM Rewards, so why play there? Let alone the hassle of cashing out any amount, be it one dollar or one thousand dollars.