HBO offered to pay off hackers with $250K

HBO offered to pay off hackers with $250K

The saga surrounding the recent HBO security breach and subsequent data dump has taken a new turn. Two separate news outlets claim that an HBO executive offered the hackers $250,000 as a "bounty payment".

According to The Verge, one such leaked document contains personal phone numbers and email addresses of some Game of Thrones actors including Peter Dinklage, Lena Headey, and Emilia Clarke.

Along with the video, they also released 3.4 GB of data including important technical details of HBO's internal network such as administrator passwords, draft scripts, and a series of emails from Leslie Cohen, HBO's vice president for film programming.

Hackers using the name "Mr. Smith" posted a fresh cache on Monday of stolen HBO files online, and demanded that the network pay a ransom of several million dollars to prevent further such releases.

This is the second data release from the hack.

The hackers demanded money worth six months of their salary, claiming they make $12 million to $15 million from stealing intellectual property and blackmailing companies.

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 HBO representative wrote that the network had "been working hard ... to review all of the material that you have made available to us".

Hackers are holding HBO to ransom. Mandiant was also the one who investigated the 2014 Sony hacking which was allegedly perpetrated by North Korea. The letter stated that the hackers are giving an ultimatum of three days to the company for response or they would publish all confidential information about the company including the corporate data which they claim to have stolen.

HBO is calling the attackers' bluff - for now: "HBO believed that further leaks might emerge from this cyber incident when we confirmed it last week", the company said.

What are your thoughts on the threat to HBO and our beloved Game of Thrones?