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Millions of Ransom Demanded by Hackers for Stolen HBO Data

12 August 2017

The hackers who breached HBO's servers have declined a ransom payment of $250,000 from a top HBO exec, according to an email leaked by hackers to the press. Now, we have learned that HBO has been trying to bargain with the hackers, even offering them a $250,000 "bug bounty" award to give the company more time.

Earlier this week, a video circulating online authored by someone identified only as "Mr. Smith" said the hackers had videos, scripts, personnel files and other from the breach.

The hackers claimed they stole no less than 1.5TB of data after more than six months of probing the security of HBO's internal network and threatened to reveal more content, including more personal data.

HBO, which previously acknowledged the theft of "proprietary information", says it's continuing to investigate and is working with police and cybersecurity experts.

The hackers have already begun to trickle some of the data into public, including unaired episodes of Ballers and Room 104 and a script summary of Game of Thrones. Leakers gonna leak. Just... please no Game of Thrones spoilers before Sunday night? With this new release of data, the hacking group demanded millions of dollars in order for them to stop leaking any more of the company's information.

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An extension for the deadline of payment of the ransom was also requested by HBO. This was the second data leak from the hackers, but so far, the damage to the network has been limited compared to a similar hack on Sony's network in 2014.

It is unlikely that the hacker obtained of actual Game of Throne episodes.

One document allegedly includes HBO CEO Richard Plepler's contact list, along with a GoT cast list with contact information for actors including Emilia Clarke, Lena Headey, and Peter Dinklage.

In statements to the press, HBO still maintains that "the review to date has not given us a reason to believe that our email system as a whole has been compromised".

Millions of Ransom Demanded by Hackers for Stolen HBO Data