Wrest Point Casino in Tasmania Refuses To Give In To Hackers Attacking Slot Machines

The Australian casino operator Federal Group was the victim of a cyberattack last year, as a result of which slot machines were disabled and cost millions in lost profits and restoration costs, according to details contained in its financial statements.

According to the Australian edition of ABC News, Federal Group, which owns the Wrest Point Casino in Tasmania in Hobart and the Country Club Tasmania Casino in Launceston, was subjected to a “major cyber attack that led to the encryption of a number of systems” and led to the shutdown of its gaming machines and hotel booking system for several weeks.

However, the company chose not to yield to the ransom demands and did not respond to the perpetrators.

In Federal Group’s 2020/21 statement, Executive CEO Daniel Hanna said:

“Federal Group has not estimated the cost of the cyberattack (including external specialists, internal resources and lost revenue), but estimates it at several million.”

He also described fiscal year 2020/21 as “Federal Group’s worst result in almost 20 years” due to site closures and capacity constraints caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. And this is despite the fact that the group announced revenue of 547 million Australian dollars (390 million US dollars) and profit after tax of 42 million Australian dollars (30 million US dollars).

In addition to operating casinos, the company also owns a number of hotels and other hospitality facilities and holds exclusive licenses for all slot machines in Tasmania. This monopoly will end in 2023, when a new law will come into force allowing owners of sites outside the Federal Group to directly buy or lease equipment.

In return, the Tasmanian government has agreed to reduce the tax that Federal Group pays on income from slot machines at Wrest Point and Country Club Tasmania.

Wrest Point Casino in Hobart, Tasmania, was the first legal casino opened in Australia. It opened its doors in 1973 after a Tasmanian-wide referendum in December 1968 voted to grant a casino license by a margin of 53% to 47%. This paved the way for the heyday of the casino industry in Australia, and to this day many high-ranking Australian casino executives began their careers at Wrest Point.

Source: Inside Asian Gaming

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