June 23, 2023 3 min read


NSW Cashless Pilot Off to Ignominious Start

A much hoped for pilot test of cashless gaming in New South Wales Australia had to be cut short after the company in charge of the technology detected unusual activity on its network

According to The Sydney Morning Herald, Banktech has detected what was described as a data breach. The pilot test was taking place at the West Newcastle Leagues Club and may now have compromised the data of at least 40 club members, according to the reports.

Data Breaches Cast Pall on Enthusiasm for Cashless Gaming in NSW  

Hackers have been able to access encrypted information concerning the digital wallets and bank accounts of the affected consumers. The test is run by Aristocrat in partnership with Banktech, and the club.

An Aristocrat spokesperson has assured that although some information has been obtained, the personal data of affected members were still safe and beyond the reach of hackers. Banktech has in the meantime reached out to independent third parties to commence a broader investigation. All relevant servers have been shut down. An Aristocrat spokesperson has updated the media and said:

As a further precaution, working with Banktech and Wests, Aristocrat ensured the swift deactivation of all relevant digital wallet functionality in the venue and has ended the digital wallet trial.

Aristocrat spokesperson

Aristocrat further added that it took its responsibility of protecting personal and financial data very seriously and it was working closely with Banktech to ensure that all proper measures are being taken. Independent MP Alex Greenwich pounced on the issue and said that the timing of the attack was very suspicious.

Greenwich suggested that criminal minds were trying to undermine public trust in cashless technology – a solution touted as one of the most effective ways to tackle problem gambling, but also cut short criminals’ ability to use NSW’s poker machines to launder their dirty money.

Robust Data Protection Measures Must Be in Place

NSW Gaming and Racing Minister David Harris said that the state’s own cybersecurity units were looking into the matter. Harris said that although he was a staunch supporter of cashless solutions, any such technology would have to ensure that it offers robust privacy and data protection.

Cashless has been touted as the best way to move past the serious breaches registered at places such as The Star Sydney and Crown Sydney, where it was found out that some AML and KYC standards have been habitually neglected, prompting not just investigations and hefty penalties, but also a determination to re-write the gambling industry.

So far, there have been no official mandates to make cashless gaming obligatory for all venues, although the measure is most likely coming. Previous objections to cashless gaming and treating customers as “criminals” may now gain traction in light of the recent incident.

Cashless gaming has been garnering a lot of political backing as well and is largely seen as an unavoidable next step in the industry.


Although Fiona doesn't have a long-spanning background within the gambling industry, she is an incredibly skilled journalist who has built a strong interest in the constantly growing iGaming network. The team at GamblingNews.com is glad to have her on our roster to help deliver the best stories as soon as they hit. Aside from writing, she loves to dabble in online casino games such as slots and roulette, both for her own enjoyment and also as research to better improve her understanding of the industry.

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