Cyber Security – Challenges for Online Casinos

LAST UPDATED: 21 Apr, 2017 @ 11:29
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Casinos have been concerned with security since time immemorial. Forever a target for fraudsters, scammers and thieves, casinos have been forced to come up with increasing security measures, identification techniques and investigation skills to weed out those who would otherwise take them to the cleaners.

Of course, casinos are used to paying out money – they do so every day, and in the millions, as some of their players get lucky. But preventing leaks from fraud and other forms of criminality is one of the main challenges facing casino operators, and the risks associated to both the house and other players are a key focus for loss prevention departments.

casino cyber securityWith casinos moving increasingly into the online space, the parameters have changed again. Like the cat and mouse game between scammers and casino bosses in land-based resorts, the Internet poses it’s own security challenges for operators. Most recently, issues of cyber security have become even more prevalent, with a seemingly never-ending run of high profile attacks, often from offshore computer hackers. These crimes can be difficult to detect, hard to trace, and in some cases, verging on impossible to prosecute.

Faced with these challenges, online casinos have no choice but to invest in cyber security measures, and to devise their own ways of protecting against these risks. But what are the security risks facing casinos in the modern age, and how can they go about nipping these problems in the bud?

Hacking Risks

One of the primary cyber security issues affecting online casinos isn’t necessarily specific to the casino industry, yet still has the potential to cause sleepless nights for top brass. Any website is prone to hacking risks, and security vulnerabilities in coding are virtually impossible to eradicate. As new software is developed all the time, and new loopholes identified for exploitation, hackers are always on the front foot when it comes to devising new ways to gain access uninvited. It’s up to the casinos to make sure they are doing everything in their power to prevent the threats associated with hacking, and to protect the safety and security of their users in the process.

Hacking can be either malicious, like in the case of a DDoS style attack, where servers are swamped with bot traffic to bring a website down. Or, in some cases, it can be a more targeted strategy, designed to gain access to sensitive customer information, including in some cases, financial information.

To guard against these threats, gambling portals rely on secure encryption, providing military-grade protection against hacking and data loss. In addition, data is routinely stored in less accessible places, to make sure that even if a website or app is hacked, privacy concerns are not significant.

Protecting Game Integrity

Another issue casinos have to be wary of is the integrity of their games. In the same way that pit bosses patrol their tables to make sure there are no cheats or underhand tactics being deployed, online casino operators need to ensure that their games are protected from external influence. A large part of this rests on the shoulders of software developers, who must make sure their games are water-tight against those who would seek to gain access and manipulate the numbers. Random number generators must be impenetrable and proven to be transparent and fair, and casinos must keep their eyes open for any suspicious betting activity that could be derived from their website being compromised.

The integrity and fairness of games is obviously important to casinos, but it needs to be assured for players’ peace of mind too. In practice, casinos often ensure their games are entirely ring-fenced, either through hosting games on a different server, or through deploying industry-leading cyber security measures designed to keep the bad elements out. A fine example of this is Party Casino and this is the reason why so many players return to play on their secure online casino website.

Fraud & Loss Prevention

Of course, casinos don’t like losing money – especially when that’s down to fraud, and loss prevention is a key part of the motivation behind developing stringent cyber security measures. People will try their best to cheat casinos both online and offline, and while the method may be different, the impact on casinos of both types is the same.
Aside from the usual risks of hacking, viruses and other similar external threats, the ever-present risk of someone using software, algorithms or other processes to game the system is something casinos have to be on the lookout for. Even right down to using third party software to identify patterns, or to make recommendations about how to play the next hand – casinos can’t stand for this type of behaviour, and by investing extensively in their cyber security resources, they can uproot the majority of these problems at source.

Securing Online Casinos For Tomorrow

The trouble with cyber security is that it’s an ever changing playing field. What applies today might be next to near useless tomorrow, and casinos and their security departments need to remain one step ahead of the game. Casinos need to get lucky every time – scammers only need to get lucky once. It’s for this reason that so many online casinos are investing extensive time and money behind securing their website – not just for today, but for the unseen risks of tomorrow.

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