More HBO Episodes Leak as 'Bug Bounty' Offer to the Hackers Surfaces
The HBO leak continues to drip, with the perpetrators making public unaired episodes of popular shows Insecure and Curb Your Enthusiasm over the weekend.
Other series, of Ballers, Barry and The Deuce, were also turned out for public consumption. Notably missing was any new Game of Thrones material.
Nonetheless, HBO said that it has no plans to play ball with the hackers. In its latest media statement, the network had this to say, sounding a little exasperated:
"We are not in communication with the hacker and we’re not going to comment every time a new piece of information is released. It has been widely reported that there was a cyber-incident at HBO. The hacker may continue to drop bits and pieces of stolen information in an attempt to generate media attention. That’s a game we’re not going to participate in. Obviously, no company wants their proprietary information stolen and released on the internet. Transparency with our employees, partners, and the creative talent that works with us has been our focus throughout this incident and will remain our focus as we move forward. This incident has not deterred us from ensuring HBO continues to do what we do best."
In a message, from July 27, asks the hackers to extend the ransom deadline, and that the company was "working hard.” It added, "As a show of good faith on our side, we are willing to commit to making a bug bounty payment of $250,000 to you as soon as we can establish the necessary account and acquire bitcoin.”
This "bounty payment" was however a "delay tactic,” a source told CNBC.
The hackers are reportedly demanding the equivalent of six months of their $12 million to $15 million “salary,” which they bring in via intellectual property theft and blackmail.
The thieves claim to have made off with 1.5 terabytes of content and information, roughly seven times that which was pilfered in the Sony Pictures hack in 2014.
After news of the initial hack broke in late July, the attackers have continued to dole out content in dribs and drabs, from Game of Thrones script summaries to executive email caches to full unaired episodes of beloved series. It also sent a video letter to HBO CEO Richard Pepler asking for a ransom:
"Our demand is clear and Non-Negotiable: We want [redacted] dollars to stop leaking your Data. HBO spends 12 million for Market Research and five million for GOT7 advertisements. So consider us another budget for your advertisements!"
It’s unclear at this point where this will end.
Source: Information Security Magazine