ESPN Reporter Calls Out U.S. Regulated Sportsbooks Over Recent Hackings

Written by:
C Costigan
Published on:

The fallout from this week's sportsbook betting account hackings continued and at least one reporter who covers the industry is not letting the matter slide.

David Payne Purdum of ESPN expressed his disgust over the matter via Twitter late Thursday, Thanksgiving Eve.

"It’s Thanksgiving Eve, so I get it, but as someone who covers the sports betting industry, the response and communication from sportsbooks and regulators regarding the recent cyber-attacks is troubling to me. Customers deserve better. Period."

DraftKing confirmed Monday that approximately $300,000 had been withdrawn from some customer accounts without authorization.

Customers, many of whom were locked out of their wagering accounts, claimed it was difficult to find any DraftKings customer service during the hacking period.  Links and numbers to customer assistance on the website also appeared to be in disarray, some broken while others redirected to dead pages. 

Those claiming responsibility for the breach took to Twitter to mock the matter, thanking DraftKings customers for the "free money".

Within hours of Purdum's tweet, DraftKings sent out an email to customers.


Hi ********,

At DraftKings the security of our customers and their information is a top priority. Given recent reports of irregular activity on some customers’ accounts at DraftKings and other gaming sites, we encourage you to take advantage of convenient ways to protect your account.

• Use unique passwords. We recommend customers use unique passwords on all their online accounts.

• Change your password. Select a strong password for your DraftKings account that you have not used on any other website.

• Opt into two-factor authentication (2FA). This will ensure you receive a unique access code each time you log in. You can turn on 2FA under Login Security in your account settings.

• Opt into email alerts. This will provide you with an email notification of every login to your account.

Taking these important steps will help ensure your DraftKings account remains secure.

The DraftKings Team

After one of Purdum's followers chimed in to express how customers should feel safe playing with regulated U.S. books, the ESPN reporter responded back.

"Agreed, but would note customers have a way better chance of getting made whole in this situation w/ regulated books than otherwise. However, I’m hearing from way too many people who can’t even get a response. That’s bad."

Johnny Detroit of WagerTalk did not exactly agree with that sentiment.

"You shocked? The offshores that had 3 people running the show have more of a clue than many of these books with 1,000 employees and $500+ million in funding."

Logan Pea tweeted:

"I've gotten the feeling that they're at a point where they're so huge, that they don't care about backlash. Losing a handful (relative term) doesn't bother them in the slightest. Do you think that's it, do you think they're pretending it didn't happen? or a little bit of both?"

Purdum responded to Mr. Pea:

"Man, I wish I knew more about PR crisis management. It feels like this is what’s going on, but I just hate that so many people can’t even get a response at this point. Sucks."

FanDuel on Monday began shutting off some accounts without apparently notifying customers as to why.

Sports betting pro and owner of, Gadoon “Spanky” Kryollos, was among those who got locked out.

"Hey @FDSportsbook, my account says it’s suspended. Your customer service leaves much to be desired. I have a hefty balance and pending bets that I can’t even see. Accounts has been open for years. What gives?"

He later announced the matter had been resolved and was unaware of the hackings that took place just hours before.

- Chris Costigan, Publisher

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