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Thieves clean out casinos with software

Discussion in 'The Attic' started by BingoT, Apr 29, 2014.

    Apr 29, 2014
  1. BingoT

    BingoT Nurses love to give shots

    Nursing & Run Bus Trips
    Thieves clean out casinos with software
    Thieves swindled hundreds of casinos across Germany in just one night by exploiting a software-bug in defective slot machines. The manufacturer may be liable for up to €10 million in damages.

    The thefts, apparently part of a coordinated and well-organized effort, happened in February but were only reported on Sunday by Spiegel.

    The software bug caused the video-roulette machines to dispense money when the combination of numbers 1936 was pushed just before pulling down on the lever, Spiegel reported.

    Some businesses were cleaned out of as much as €100,000 over the course of the night.

    But the real loser may be Paul Gauselmann, whose company produced the machines. The company had distributed some 100,000 machines all over Germany and may be liable for the costs incurred by its clients.

    The combination was likely published on the internet in exchange for money, according to Mario Hofmeister, a representative of the company contacted by T-Online.

    But Hofmeister denied that Gauselmann's company would be liable given that the machines were not used in an authorized manner.

    The Local
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    6 people like this.
  2. Apr 29, 2014
  3. dunover

    dunover Unofficial T&C's Editor Staff Member CAG PABnononaccred PABnonaccred PABinit mm3 webmeister

    International Money Launderer
    the bus shelter, opposite GCHQ Benhall
    We had a similar scenario back in the 1990's with a couple of bugs in the 'Donkey Kong' and 'Thunderbirds' AWP's. Whether these were deliberately inserted by bent programmers or accidental we'll never know, but one programmer did get jailed for putting a similar bug in the 'Andy Capp?' AWP whereby it would pay it's £3 cash jackpot each spin if a certain combination of buttons was pressed before the spin.

    I would suggest this was a bent programmer who was quietly milking the game with possibly one or more cohorts on a limited scale and not enough to attract attention and somehow the secret was spread eventually, leading to the golden goose being killed......
    3 people like this.
  4. Apr 29, 2014
  5. Slotster!

    Slotster! I predict a riot. CAG

    al Hazard
    Location, Location!
    There's something that doesn't ring true about this story -- not least the inclusion of 1936 in Germany as the supposed 'code'...

    I wonder...
    1 person likes this.
  6. Apr 29, 2014
  7. vinylweatherman

    vinylweatherman You type well loads CAG MM

    STILL At Leisure
    United Kingdom
    A classic emptier, but it didn't seem to follow the usual pattern. A mass empty in a single night looks like this was a deliberate back door coded into the machines, and this one night of emptying was pre planned well in advance.

    I also find it hard to understand how the pressing of a specific 4 number code can "accidentally" trigger the machine to dispense all the cash. I see no legitimate reason for such a general function to even exist (insert code for specific action) on a gaming machine that is in operational mode.

    The only possibility I can think of is that this is a "test mode" function, and that for some reason, it worked in operational mode. The required code would thus be in the manual supplied with the machine, not so hard for a criminal to get hold of simply by buying a single unit for themselves.

    Maybe there was something else needed before the code was inserted, a way to put the machine into test mode without having the keys. There were a couple of emptiers that worked on this principle back in the 80's and 90's. It could even be done by forcing open the back door and opening the switch that set the machine mode, then it could be played in test mode whilst appearing to the average onlooker to be in normal operational mode.
    1 person likes this.
  8. Apr 29, 2014
  9. mathsboy1975

    mathsboy1975 Senior Member webmeister

    software engineer
    UK London
    I was thinking the same thing. As a software engineer myself, it is usually common practice for code to be reviewed by other programmers before it gets approval to be submitted. You would either need to collude with your co-programmers or pull a sneaky by changing what version was deployed on the machine. Then again I don't know much about how software is upgraded (if it is at all) on physical slot machines. Either way in this day and age of software companies being liable for errors like this you would think that the company would have a copy of the source code that is MEANT to run on the machines and be able to prove that the machine was sabotaged with a non-approved version and hence not really their fault.

    If it really is a back door and the company were not aware of it then you have to say that they deserve it for having slack practices of software development.
  10. Apr 29, 2014
  11. lotusch

    lotusch Megaways Slots, as useless as salt in your coffee CAG webby PABaccred mm3

    Marketing Assistant
    Dún Dealgan
    Interesting stuff...
    We had some cases in The Netherlands as well many years ago...

    One of the most memorable ones was a slot called Voodoo where a mystery prize could be won in the top/club game.
    The max was 200 credits which then was about 40 dutch guilders = 18 Euro's.
    If you got the mystery no matter what prize it was between 4-200 credits,after the prize was given you just took the power off the machine by unplugging the power for 10 seconds and then plug it back in.
    After restart of the machine it would given you the same line again but always with a guaranteed 200 credits and you could repeat it as many times as possible... :D:D

    Golden times those were... ;):cool::D

    And there is a few more I know about from that day and age...

    I think now with all those camera's and technical better machines the chances on slots are slim to find and exploit another bug in a landbased casino... :)
    nikantw, dunover and Mouche12 like this.
  12. Apr 29, 2014
  13. osulle

    osulle Ueber Meister CAG mm4 mm1

    Northern hemisphere
    A very interesting case indeed. I am wondering though if somebody from the company was involved maybe in giving the code out since all the machines were cleared out in one night. Usually if a bug is discovered it would take a little time for others via internet etc so the machines would be hit over a period of time and not one night. It seems to orchestrated for somebody to have just stumbled across. I'd be very interested to see if they do further investigation on this case.

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