Culture

Hackers are holding Game of Thrones scripts hostage, demanding ransom from HBO

Hackers are holding Game of Thrones scripts hostage, demanding ransom from HBO”

"This round includes scripts for the first four episodes of the current 'Game of Thrones' season, as well as the script of the yet-to-air fifth episode, all watermarked with the hackers" motto, "HBO is Falling'", the report said.

In the five-minute video, a "Mr. Smith" tells HBO CEO Richard Plepler that the network has three days to pay a ransom in bitcoins or see hackers release more confidential corporate data and entire unaired seasons of the network's shows, the AP reported.

In the video, the hackers, who are fronted by a man who refers to himself only as "Mr. Smith", say they will only deal directly with Plepler, and are demanding "our six-month salary in bit coin".

HBO bosses have called in the FBI to investigate the security breach, while also working with police and cybersecurity experts in an attempt to prevent the release of any more information or unaired episodes.

In the latest development, the hackers have released the personal phone numbers, email addresses and home addresses of Game of Thrones Season 7 cast members, among them Emilia Clarke (Daenerys), Lena Headey (Cersei), Peter Dinklage (Tyrion) and Kit Harington (Jon Snow).

HBO officials acknowledged last week that the company had been targeted by hackers who managed to get "proprietary information". "We are serious enough to do our business", the note read. Money isn't our main objective. "We want to be your partner in a tiny part of HBO's huge income".

The email continued, "Some of HBO's top competitors are negotiating with us for buying the dump".

As of this writing, HBO has not bowed to any demands, and is reviewing the data to discover exactly what was leaked.

HBO said in a statement that it believed that further leaks might emerge from the breach and that "the forensic review is ongoing".

It is still unclear if the hackers' claim of having 1.5 terabytes of data is true.

"We continue to work around the clock with outside cybersecurity firms and law enforcement to resolve the incident". To date, they have released only 3.4 GB of data from the initial hack of 1.5 TB.



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