There have been several cases lately of hackers stealing the not-yet-published materials in attempts of extortion. The most famous one was when they stole almost an entire season of ‘Orange is the New Black’ and demanded payment. Of course, Netflix has refused to pay, and hackers published the content.
Now, we have a similar situation, where an upcoming Disney movie was stolen, and once again, the hackers responsible demand money or the show goes online. Hollywood also has no shortage in extortion attempts, as it would seem. For now, the Walt Disney Co. has refused to give us a comment on the situation. What we do know, the movie in question is the Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales. Another movie in the well-known series and this one is supposed to be released on May 26. It would seem that hackers managed to get their hands on the early edition, and they now demand a pretty big amount in Bitcoin.
The company’s CEO, Bob Iger, has unveiled the situation in a staff meeting in NYC. Much like Netflix, Disney too has decided not to pay the ransom, and the company now works with federal investigators in an attempt to take care of the problem.
Hackers have started threatening with a release of the first five minutes of the film, which will then grow to 20-minute parts until Disney pays the ransom. These demands have come only days after a worldwide ransomware attack, during which an unknown hacker or a group of hackers have damaged companies in over 150 countries.
As we said, this isn’t the first case of film and TV studios being targeted by this sort of attacks. Hollywood’s already dealing with many piracy problems, and now they have these attacks as well. The last six months have brought at least half dozen extortion attempts, as it was discovered.
And of course, we already mentioned the ‘Orange is the New Black’ theft, during which hackers stole and published ten episodes of the season that was only supposed to air on June 9. This was known to be done by a hacker who calls himself ‘thedarkoverlord’, and he has admitted the hack on his Twitter account. He also used Twitter to post a link to the stolen episodes, as both proof of the theft, as well as a sort of punishment for Netflix because they refused to pay.
Back in 2004, there was another big theft, after the hackers launched an attack on Sony Pictures. This time, they published executives’ embarrassing emails while the studio was finishing preparations for releasing the comedy called ‘The Interview’. The plot of the movie involved assassination of Kim Jong-Un, the leader of North Korea. The responsibility for this was claimed by a hacker group, however, some believed it to be a fake confession, and that the real culprit was the North Korea itself.