|November 6, 2002
Contact: Eric Wing (212) 907-9283
Chip Tuttle (781) 246-9300
NTRA ADDS SYSTEMS SECURITY EXPERTS; ASSESSMENTS AND TESTING TO BEGIN IMMEDIATELY
A computer systems security and testing team has been added to the NTRA Wagering Technology Working Group. The Technology and Security Risk Services practice of Ernst & Young has already begun to assess and test tote security systems, coordinating its efforts with tracks, tote companies and the Thoroughbred Racing Protective Bureau (TRPB).
Ernst & Young is a leading security services provider for many of the Fortune 200 corporations, including major financial, technology and electronic commerce companies.
"Issues of information systems security are not unique to horseracing or pari-mutuel wagering," said Mark Doll, national director of Security and Technology Solutions for Ernst & Young. "Every industry involved in these kinds of financial transactions faces similar issues. We look forward to helping the horseracing industry determine both short-term and longer-term steps to assure wagering security and enhanced public confidence."
The retention of the specialized unit of Ernst & Young was one of several initial action items recommended by the NTRA Wagering Technology Working Group, which met Monday. The Working Group was formed last week to promote industry-wide solutions to issues raised in connection with this year’s Breeders’ Cup Pick Six wagering.
Initially, the Ernst & Young unit will seek information from the industry’s totalisator companies and racetrack operators (starting with the Churchill Downs – Magna Entertainment – New York Racing Association group) as part of an expedited assessment and testing process, which is expected to take approximately four weeks.
Working with the NTRA’s Technical Task Force, the TRPB and others, the team’s first priority will be to identify immediate steps that the industry can take, with tote company cooperation, to maximize wagering security while longer-term technology issues are addressed.
"The industry is working together as never before to achieve a common, overriding priority: assuring public confidence in the sport of horseracing by making concrete improvements to its wagering systems," said NTRA Commissioner Tim Smith. "Adding Ernst & Young’s considerable expertise in the area of electronic transaction security and testing is part of that focused, ongoing effort."
Representatives of the Ernst & Young unit began fact-finding sessions with industry representatives yesterday, and continue today with multiple meetings, including an initial session with tote companies.
The next meeting of the NTRA Wagering Technology Working Group is scheduled for tomorrow, Thursday, November 7. Among other agenda items, the Working Group is expected to focus on potential interim steps for immediate review with industry and tote company representatives.
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