Ohio Lottery Winners Confront Difficulties Following Cybersecurity Breach

The aftermath of a cybersecurity breach on Christmas Eve has left the Ohio Lottery dealing with the aftermath, as winners are unable to cash prizes exceeding $599 at various locations. Ohio Lottery officials have launched an investigation to determine the extent of the breach and the specific data compromised. The breach, claimed by a group called DragonForce, has resulted in the seizure of over 600 gigabytes of data, including personal information such as names, addresses, Social Security numbers, and details of winnings.

One frustrated Ohio Lottery player, 85-year-old Edward Riley, shared his experience with the ongoing incident. After winning $1,000 on a scratch-off ticket, he found that he could only claim his prize through the Ohio Lottery smartphone app or by mailing the ticket to the Ohio Lottery Central Office in Cleveland. Despite his lack of tech-savvy, Riley opted for the mobile app, spending four hours figuring it out, only to learn he must wait an additional 10 days for his winnings due to the app’s processing protocols.

Riley expressed concern that lottery sellers are not adequately providing players with information about the cybersecurity incident and the impact it has on prize claims. The Ohio Lottery reassures consumers to be vigilant against identity theft and fraud and advises them to monitor account statements for any irregular activity.

As the cybersecurity fallout unfolds, the Ohio Lottery reassures the public that, as of now, there is no evidence of misuse or public release of information connected to the incident. Winning numbers for most games can still be checked through the Ohio Lottery website and mobile application. Despite the inconvenience, the Ohio Lottery emphasizes the safety of playing lottery games, asserting that its machines and technology were not impacted by the cybersecurity incident.

The Ohio Lottery is committed to notifying affected individuals promptly and in compliance with applicable laws. The state also emphasizes its dedication to providing credit monitoring services to protect Ohioans in case consumer data is compromised. Meanwhile, winners await the resolution of the payout issue, with uncertainty lingering about when casinos and authorized facilities will resume cashing prizes exceeding $599.