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Hackers Threaten to Release 'Game of Thrones' Season 7 Finale

23 Aug, 2017 By: Erik Gruenwedel

Online hackers who infiltrated HBO backend technology in July reportedly are threatening to release the season seven ending episode seven early unless they are paid a multimillion-dollar ransom.

Hackers dubbed the “Mr. Smith Group,” in communication to , indicated they had access to HBO platforms and programs and that they would release the conclusion to HBO’s biggest hit ahead of its airing Aug. 27.

Regardless, “Thrones” remains one of the most-pirated programs globally. The July 16 airing of the first episode of season seven was pirated 91.74 million times, according to online monitoring service MUSO. With 77.91 million illegal streams and downloads, streaming was the most popular way to access the show. File-sharing networks generated 8.36 million user-actions, while downloading tracked 4.95 million actions.

HBO, which has refused to pay any demand, first issued a statement when news broke of a data breach at the Time Warner-owned premium channel.

“We are not in communication with the hacker and we’re not going to comment every time a new piece of information is released,” HBO said. “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.”

About the Author: Erik Gruenwedel

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