Entertainment

Everything You Need to Know About the HBO Data Breach

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HBO

Earlier this week HBO was subject to a devastating cyber attack. The hackers breached the network's computer systems allowing them to gain access to upcoming episodes and future scripts of several HBO shows. It wasn't just a couple episodes that were leaked, though, with reports that thousands of internal HBO documents were also hacked.

HBO confirmed the attack earlier this week in a statement to Entertainment Weekly saying,

“HBO recently experienced a cyber incident, which resulted in the compromise of proprietary information. 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.”

HBO Executive Richard Plepler also sent an email around to network employees revealing the breach and urging them not to worry. The email also assured staff that its “email system as a whole had not been compromised” but an investigation is currently being conducted.

Reports of the leak were first sent to many entertainment reporters who received an anonymous email from the assumed hackers. 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.”

The hackers clearly aren't interested in anonymity since they're sending thousands of emails bragging about their misdeeds. The email even promises an interview to the reporter who spreads the word of the hack the best.

The hackers email calls out Game of Thrones as the biggest target but fortuantely no upcoming episodes have been leaked – yet. The only thing Game of Thrones related that has been leaked is written material that may contain information for next week's episode. Other confirmed leaks are upcoming episodes of Room 104 and Ballers. Also released are two episodes of the upcoming 2018 Bill Hader show Barry.

The hackers have claimed 1.5TB of data has been breached and promise to release more of that data soon. This is up to 7x larger than the memorable Sony hack of 2014. That breach released thousands of emails, scripts, and video files — and revealed the massive gender pay gap in Hollywood. As a result of the breach releasing such damning information Sony Pictures chairman Amy Pascal was fired.

This actually isn't the first time the network has been subject to leaks of its popular shows. Back in 2015, the first four episodes of the fifth season of Game of Thrones were leaked online before the premiere. However, it did very little to impact the monster ratings of Game of Thrones due to its rabid fan base.

It's not yet known what the hack may mean for your favorite shows. The breach could potentially put shows like Ballers and Room 104 in ratings jeopardy if fans opt for the pirated content instead of the live airings. Game of Thrones probably won't be affected, though, since fans of the show are incredibly loyal and likely won't seek out hacked content.

Are you hoping leaked episodes of Game of Thrones will find its way online? Let us know in the comments below!

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