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The most high-profile hacker attacks on casinos


The hackers whose attacks worked probably continue their activities to this day, managing not to fall into the hands of law enforcement agencies. However, we can analyze attempts to hack online casino slot machines and highlight the main trends in the strategies of the most large-scale hacker attacks.

Hacking an online casino: is it possible?

hack 2It’s not really that simple. Online casinos that truly care about their reputation and carefully monitor security are willing to pay tens of thousands of dollars for high-quality software that is almost impossible to crack. Therefore, experienced hackers are unlikely to choose to hack an interactive club with a high-profile world name.

While some hack the software, others find an alternative solution-an attack on the game accounts of users by selecting a password. Cybercriminals, wanting to break the “big jackpot”, do not stop even before the fact that hacking an online casino faces criminal liability, regardless of which country it occurs.

Next, let’s look at some of the most popular techniques that were used by slot machine hackers before the advent of modern online casinos equipped with security systems.

From history: how slot machines used to be hacked in land-based casinos

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  • The Yo-yo method.

This is the oldest method of hacking slot machines. The trick was to tie a thin rope to the coin and throw it into the slot machine. This was enough to register the coin. Then, having registered a Deposit, the gamer pulled out a coin and started the game. This could go on many times. This very popular method of hacking was called Yo-yo. Of course, no one has used it for a long time. Casino employees will only laugh if they see that someone is trying to cheat the slot machine in this way.

  • Coin trimming

A similar method was to trim the coin at the edges. When it is placed in the slot machine, the first initial sensor of the machine registers the coin as valid, and the second discards it. Once upon a time, scammers actively used this method. But, again, this won’t work in modern casinos.

  • Counterfeit coins 

Another way to hack slot machines is to use fake coins. They were made of cheap hard material. There was a time when fake coins were distributed to land-based casinos. This lasted until until the gambling establishments do not recognize this scheme and did not take appropriate action.

  • Using a string to hack slot machines

In the 70s of the last century, a type of fraudulent device was created from a guitar string or wire and a metal rod with curved ends. It was called a double-bottom casket and was used extensively in Las Vegas gambling establishments until the 80’s. The device was placed in the payout tray and scrolled until the jackpot button was pressed.

  • Light Wand device-light stick

After that, a light stick appeared. This small battery-powered light device, attached to a wire, was inserted into the coin-issuing device. The light blocked the slot machine’s optical sensors, which monitor how many coins came out during the payout. Thus, when a winning combination appeared on the screen, no matter how many points were awarded, the slot machine could not stop issuing coins, and they poured out of the tray without stopping.

  • Ronald Dale Harris and the cheat code

Soon there was a cheat code that was invented by Ronald Dale Harris, a software engineer from Nevada. His job was to program computer chips into slot machines to make payouts. However, he went against the rules and put his code on many slot machines. As a result, you could throw coins in a certain order and immediately get a win.

Modern stories of online casino hacking by hackers

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  • Initiation of hacking of the British online casino

Young Polish hackers-Peter Smirnov and Patrick Surmachki-gave the owner of one of the largest British online casinos an ultimatum: it provides criminals with 50% of the company’s shares or the server of an interactive gambling club will be hacked and destroyed.

The owner of the casino knew the criminals personally and communicated with them for four years without suspecting anything. Thanks to this, the attackers studied the structure of the server, which allowed them to carry out hacking.

The owner of the company did not make a deal with the criminals, as a result of which they began to carry out their threats. The first was decided to hack the American server of the company. However, the criminals were identified. They were forced to pay the full amount of material damage, after which they were sentenced to prison terms of four and five years.

  • Massive jackpots in Playtech slot machines: hacking or luck?

The unusual incident involved Playtech slot machines at Va-bank, Grand Casino and Casino Europa online casinos. Gamers from Belarus massively broke record jackpots on the same slot machines. In the end, it was paid about $400 thousand.

Despite the fact that it is difficult to believe in such luck, Playtech experts after a thorough check did not find any sign of hacking of the game software. What is the cause of this phenomenon is still unknown.

  • Cyber attack and blackmail Cowboys Casino

After the canadian online casino Cowboys Casino was hacked, hackers posted on the file-sharing site Pastebin information about money transactions, investors, as well as personal data of customers of the interactive gambling club.

According to the criminals, it was very easy to hack the casino, since the security system simply did not exist. The hackers promised to publish all the information related to the casino until its organizers consider it necessary to think about the security system of users.

  • Criminals broke into deosbet casino two times in a row

An equally amazing story happened with the DEOSBet blockchain casino. As a result of the first attack, hackers stole about $200 thousand from users ‘ accounts in just a few minutes. However, a month later, they decided to “go back” and commit a new hack of the same online casino. This time they managed to get hold of the sum of $138 thousand.

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