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Gila River Hotels and Casinos

Reducing spend and increasing security with a vCISO


Gila River Hotels & Casinos operates three Arizona casinos owned by the Gila River Indian Community: Wild Horse Pass, Lone Butte and Vee Quiva. All three casinos offer a combination of slots, table games, bingo, poker and hotels.

Business Challenge

Develop and implement a tailored security strategy to meet regulatory requirements.


Casino and Gaming

The Challenge

For Gila River Hotels & Casinos, the protection of their guests, infrastructure, data and revenue is paramount.

As an organization that has grown exponentially over the years, including changes in infrastructure, staff and technology; ensuring that their overall security posture allows them to adhere to compliance mandates and is able to address today’s and adapt to tomorrow’s mounting security threats, was at the forefront of their IT endeavors.

However, Gila River lacked the resources and expertise to dedicate to the development and implementation of a tailored security strategy that complies with their regulatory requirements. They turned to OneNeck, a longstanding partner of over 20 years, to help address their security needs.

“We needed a resource with the breadth and depth of experience to help Gila River evolve our overall security posture, adopt more effective security policies, and provide ongoing training to my IT Teams,” said Chris Bolton, Chief Information Officer at Gila River Hotels & Casinos. “However, bringing on a full-time Chief Information Security Officer (CISO) would require additional budget and time spent onboarding a new employee, ultimately prolonging the completion dates of many of our security initiatives. With OneNeck’s new virtual CISO (vCISO) offering, we were able to address our security needs immediately, without the constraints and prohibitive costs associated with a traditional CISO hire.

The Solution

The custom-tailored journey began with the goal of building a successful information security program that was the right fit for Gila River’s needs. One that ensures the appropriate mechanisms were in place to help identify and prevent the compromise of information security and availability of Gila River’s data.

Rather than reinventing the wheel, OneNeck security experts leveraged Gila River’s existing mapped assessments, including their Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) and Gaming Laboratory International (GLI) audits, to help identify any security gaps, outline remediation steps and ultimately build a security framework Gila River can leverage on their own.

The Results

The significant cost savings by eliminating the need to hire additional headcount was substantial. In addition, by leveraging OneNeck’s vCISO offering, Gila River was able to take advantage of the following benefits:

  • Improved security
  • Reallocation of time and resources
  • Streamlined reporting
  • Security expertise

“OneNeck’s vCISO offering has provided us with tremendous value from day one. We have been able to vastly improve our existing information security program and boost our overall security posture. I am confident that we have best practices and standards in place and are well maintained in areas of privacy, data handling, incident response and more,” said Bolton.

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