If you are a fan of Game of Thrones here is a shocking news for you – Home Box Office (HBO), has joined the list of media giant who suffered data breaches. In HBO’s case, hackers have leaked unreleased and upcoming episodes and scripts of groundbreaking Television show Game of Thrones.
That’s not all, hackers who have claimed responsibility for the hack are threatening to leak more data in coming days. So far, according to a report from Entertainment Weekly, hackers have sent emails to several media outlets claiming that they have stolen 1.5 terabytes of data from HBO’s system.
Entertainment Weekly noted that the data contains upcoming episode of Ballers and Room 104 (which has apparently been leaked online) and files which seem related to the fourth episode of Game of Thrones which will be aired next week.
The email sent to the media outlets said that:
“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, on the other hand, has acknowledged the breach. However, it doesn’t confirm if Game of Thrones related data was stolen or not or what kind of data was stolen by the hackers.
“HBO recently experienced a cyber incident, which resulted in the compromise of proprietary information,” HBO network said in a statement.
“We immediately began investigating the incident and are working with law enforcement and outside cyber security firms. Data protection is a top priority at HBO, and we take seriously our responsibility to protect the data we hold.”
It is unclear who is behind this breach and why did they choose to target HBO. In case if hackers have access to such a massive trove of data it will be devastating for the network. Remember, in December 2014; Sony suffered a similar breach in which a hacking group going by the handle of “Guardians of Peace” (GOP) stole a massive amount of data from Sony’s servers and ended up leaking movies and financial information of the company.
In an email alert sent by HBO’s chairman and CEO Richard Plepler, it was stated that:
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.”
John Humphreys, SVP of Business Development & Alliances of Proficio commented on the issue and said that:
“Studios, like many other industries, has an extensive list of supporting partners and business alliances with ‘mission-critical’ data that must be protected. It would benefit entertainment entities (like HBO) to follow strict security procedures – similar to those found in regulated industries – to keep propriety information out of the hands of faceless hackers. Although the attack method isn’t entirely clear just yet, this particular incident underscores the need for organizations to take a layered security approach to protect critical and digital assets. Using perimeter security alone is not enough – host based security and database security will also need to be employed (with events from these security systems monitored 24×7 by a SOC or MSSP).
This is the fourth incident this year where hackers have stolen data from a media giant. The hacking spree started in May by The Dark Overlord hacker or hackers. Here is the list of their hacks and leaks:
Some claim the episodes have been leaked on ThePirateBay
Netflix’s Orange Is the New Black season 5 leak: The Dark Overlord hacked Hollywood-based Larson Studios and stole unreleased season 5 of Netflix’ Orange Is the New Black and leaked it online after failed negotiations with Netflix and the Studio.
Steve Harvey’s “Funderdome” TV Show: The Dark Overlord leaked the first eight episodes of Steve Harvey’s Funderdome TV show, before its premiere. All episodes were leaked on ThePirateBay.
Update: 3:49 PM Friday, August 4, 2017, Greenwich Mean Time (GMT)
A Reddit user has leaked Episode number 4 from Game of Thrones’s season 7 – Read about it here.