Oklahoma Tribal Casinos Latest Cyberattack Victims, Indigo Sky Reveals Breach

Posted on: January 11, 2024, 02:27h. 

Last updated on: January 11, 2024, 02:35h.

Two Oklahoma tribal casinos are the latest cyberattack victims in the US gaming industry.

Oklahoma casinos data breach cyberattack
Employees and visitors to Indigo Sky Casino & Resort and Outpost Casino in Oklahoma are being warned about a December data breach. The casinos say personal information was obtained by an unknown third-party group. (Image: Indigo Sky Casino & Resort)

The Indigo Sky Casino & Resort and Outpost Casino, both in Wyandotte, this week confirmed data breaches that occurred in early December. The casinos are owned and operated by the Eastern Shawnee Tribe of Oklahoma.

Indigo Sky Casino & Resort and Outpost Casino recently discovered unusual activity on our computer network. Upon identifying the issue, we promptly began an internal investigation, took steps to secure our systems, and notified law enforcement,” the casinos’ joint statement explained.

The tribe said a review of its casinos’ IT system determined that an unknown third party accessed the network on Dec. 1, 2023. The casinos have since engaged a forensic security firm to investigate and confirm the casinos’ computer security.

Indigo Sky and Outpost this week sent out letters to employees and patrons whose personal information might have been illegally seized in the cyberattack.

Personal Information Obtained

The data breach statement from the Eastern Shawnee Tribe says personal identifying information (PII) was ill-gotten by cybercriminals. PII includes names, driver’s license numbers, Social Security numbers, and medical information.

The casinos believe workers and customers were affected, however, no banking information or credit card numbers were reportedly compromised.

Indigo Sky and Outpost are offering free credit monitoring and identity theft protection services for impacted people. Those who notice suspicious activity are encouraged to notify law enforcement, including the police and their state’s attorney general.

We value the trust you place in us to protect your privacy, take our responsibility to safeguard personal information seriously, and apologize for any inconvenience this incident might cause,” the statement concluded.

Indigo Sky Casino is a 245-room hotel and RV resort with over 1,400 slots and electronic gaming machines, 20 table games, and a bingo room. Outpost is a smaller facility with only slots and no on-site lodging. The facility offers about 280 gaming machines.

Ongoing Security Issue

Commercial and tribal casinos have been targeted by cybergangs in recent years. The most notable high-profile cases occurred last year when MGM Resorts and Caesars Entertainment were both attacked by ransomware groups.

Before the MGM and Caesars events, cybergangs tended to prefer targeting tribal casinos over commercial resorts.

In 2021, the FBI Cyber Crime Division said casinos owned by Native Americans should be on high alert for ransomware attacks. Federal cybersecurity officials said ransomware groups often gain access through third-party vendors that have business contracts and relationships with tribal casinos.

“Between 2022 and 2023, the FBI noted ransomware attacks compromising casinos through third-party gaming vendors. The attacks frequently targeted small and tribal casinos, encrypting servers and the PII of employees and patrons,” the release read.

Casinos are encouraged by the FBI to maintain offline backups of data, ensure that all backup data is encrypted and immutable, and regularly review the security of third-party vendors “and those connected with your organization.”

The FBI continues to stress the importance of businesses having strict protocols for establishing remote IT access. The federal law enforcement agency additionally says companies should document and continuously monitor remote connections and institute recovery plans.