Though we thought it was the high demand of players that were trying to access the B.C. Lottery Corporation’s new gambling site Playnow.com that had it shut down Thursday morning shortly after a much heralded launch. We find out now it was a privacy breach that was the cause of the shut down.
It was revealed that the breach was pretty significant as some players were able to see personal information of other players such as names, contact information and even credit card and bank information. Some even reported the ability to gamble with other player’s money.
The Lottery Corporation however blamed the shut down on high demand and made no mention of any security breach at all publically till four days later. The BCLC CEO Michael Graydon knew about the security breach Friday, the day after the site was shut down. It was revealed that 134 gamblers had their privacy breached and were contacted by BCLC officials. Graydon said he didn’t feel going public at the time with this information was necessary.
He told CBC Radio on Wednesday,
“As we continued to investigate after the site was shut down we found that the data crossovers had happened in a number of locations. The first thing that we did was contact the privacy commissioner and let them know that there may have been a privacy problem.
At that point, our public became our players, and not the general public. The site was closed down. There was no ability for further transaction and we felt it important that we communicated directly with our players with the level of detail they expect from us in regards to what had happened.”
You can read here that during the launch on Thursday that the site was being heralded as a safe and secure option for B.C. residents to gamble online. Currently there has been no word on when the PlayNow.com site will be re-opened.