HBO has fallen victim to internet hacker who are threatening to release personal information as well as scripts from the popular series Game of Thrones. Information from the actors include personal email addresses as well as phone numbers; the hackers also claim to have private corporate data including passwords and internal emails. The hackers are demanding a multimillion dollar payout to prevent the information and latest scripts from going public.
“Mr. Smith” the pseudonym of the hacker sent a five-minute video letter to Richard Pleper, the chief executive of HBO in which the company is given three days to either pay up or face the information going public. In total, the hackers claim to have stolen 1.5 terabytes of data. The hackers claim to make between $ 12 and $15 million a year in similar ransoms and are demanding that HBO pay them six months of their annual salary. To prove their point the hackers sent HBO 3.4GB worth of data which included scripts, internal network information, passwords and a month worth of emails from the vice president for film programming at HBO.
In the five-minute video letter, the hackers say that it took them six months to break into HBO via holes in software that companies such as Microsoft are unaware of. More than 50 internal document letters were released to HBO from the hackers some of which included legal claims against the network, future plans and a list of more than 30,000 emails which are labeled ‘Richards contact list.’
One of the documents apparently contains the personal information, including home addresses, for much of the Game of Thrones cast members. Actors whose information has been compromised include Peter Dinklage and Lena Headey.
HBO’s current issue with hackers is not the first time for the company, but they have been minor when compared to the major leak from Sony back in 2014. As it sits, HBO is working with police and cyber security experts to come up with a solution to these hackers.