HBO hackers demand money, leak more stolen data and GoT scripts
The hackers who’ve breached HBO and supposedly made off with 1.5TB of the company’s data have released a second data dump.
- Draft scripts from the first five “Game of Thrones” episodes of season 7. This includes the one for the next episode to be officially released next Sunday.
- Details about HBO’s network.
- Many of the company’s internal documents marked “confidential”: employment offers and agreements, business and marketing strategies, a list of contacts that is likely that of the HBO CEO Richard Plepler, legal documents, emails, and possibly persona information of some Game of Thrones actors.
Finally, it also includes the (undated) ransom note in a video, in which the hackers claim that:
- It took them about six months to find a way into HBO’s networks
- The company was their 17th target (“Only 3 of our past targets refused to pay and were punished very badly and 2 of them collapsed entirely”), and
- They spend up to half a million dollars per year to buy zero-day exploits, which allow them to execute successful attacks against major targets and annually pull 12 to 15 million dollars.
In the ransom note, the asked-for ransom amount has been redacted, but we’re probably talking about millions. And, since they’ve leaked data again, it’s pretty safe to assume HBO hasn’t paid the ransom.
HBO spokesperson Jeff Cusson told Wired that their forensic review is still ongoing, but that, so far, there is no reason to believe their email system as a whole has been compromised. They continue their investigation of the breach with the help of outside cybersecurity firms and law enforcement.
The company expects that more data will be leaked by the attackers, but there has been no mention of paying the ransom.