Hackers Warn They'll Release Game of Thrones Content Online

Posted 2017/08/02 2134 0

HBO has reportedly been robbed of its unreleased digital content.


In an email to journalists, the hacker or hackers claimed to have obtained 1.5 terabytes of data from HBO, according to Entertainment Weekly, which broke the news. Unaired episodes of “Ballers” and “Room 104” may have been published online, and the hacker vowed more would be “coming soon,” the magazine reported. Per EW, the email read:

“Hi to all mankind. The greatest leak of cyber space era is happening. What’s its name? Oh I forget to tell. Its HBO and Game of Thrones……!!!!!! You are lucky to be the first pioneers to witness and download the leak. Enjoy it & spread the words. Whoever spreads well, we will have an interview with him. HBO is falling.”

HBO is not commenting on what content might have been stolen, confirming specific titles or the amount of data accessed. This morning, HBO chairman and CEO Richard Plepler sent an email to HBO employees alerting them of the breach.

“As most of you have probably heard by now, there has been a cyber incident directed at the company which has resulted in some stolen proprietary information, including some of our programming,” he wrote. “Any intrusion of this nature is obviously disruptive, unsettling, and disturbing for all of us. I can assure you that senior leadership and our extraordinary technology team, along with outside experts, are working round the clock to protect our collective interests. The efforts across multiple departments have been nothing short of herculean. It is a textbook example of quintessential HBO teamwork. The problem before us is unfortunately all too familiar in the world we now find ourselves a part of. As has been the case with any challenge we have ever faced, I have absolutely no doubt that we will navigate our way through this successfully.”

If hackers succeed in spoiling plot details, it would not be the first time for “Game of Thrones.” In 2015, the first four episodes of the fifth season were leaked online before they aired. HBO, which is owned by media giant Time Warner Inc., is just the most recent entertainment company to endure threats from cybercriminals. In May, hackers claimed to have stolen Walt Disney Co.’s “Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales” and demanded ransom, though that hack turned out to be a hoax, according to Disney CEO Robert Iger.

In another major recent incident, Netflix was attacked by a hacker known as the Dark Overlord, who uploaded episodes from the new season of “Orange Is the New Black” after the company refused to pay the ransom.

The most devastating example of a Hollywood cyberbreach remains the 2014 attack on Sony Pictures Entertainment that was blamed on North Korea. That attack came as Sony was about to release the comedy “The Interview,” about a fictional attempt to assassinate North Korean leader Kim Jong Un. It began by crippling Sony’s computer systems and uploading yet-to-be released movies online; it went on to expose embarrassing emails between executives and movie producers.