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USA indicts Iranian in 'Game of Thrones' HBO hack

USA indicts Iranian in 'Game of Thrones' HBO hack”

Announcing the charges, acting Manhattan US attorney Joon Kim said Mesri is "had previously hacked computer systems for the Iranian military". He also stands accused of being an occasional member of the hacking collective "Turk Black Hat Security".

Kim claimed that Mesri used the alias Skote Vahshat and "conducted his attack on HBO in a methodical way" and compromised multiple HBO employee accounts in order to steal 1.5 terrabytes of data, transferring it to his own server. The alleged hacker, which the Federal Bureau of Investigation identified as Behzad Mesri, an Iranian citizen, demanded $6 million in bitcoin from HBO, threatening to release more sensitive content if the media company refused to pay up.

The Justice Department on Tuesday charged a part-time Iranian government hacker with infiltrating HBO and trying to extort the company, a move that comes amid allegations the charges were rushed to bolster President Donald Trump's case against Tehran.

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Considering Mersei now isn't in the United States, it may take some time for him to be caught by the US government, but hopefully this sends a clear message to those looking to hack into HBO and leak the final season of Game of Thrones - which will be airing sometime in 2018 or 2019.

"Hi to all losers!" one read.

The HBO hack echoes the 2014 hack of Sony, exposing internal documents and emails. Often, the emails included images of Game of Thrones characters like the Night King, with accompanying messages like "Good luck to HBO".

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Mesri threatened to release the episodes if HBO executives did not pay him $6 million in the digital currency bitcoin.

In the initial ransom note sent to HBO, the hacker said, "Its [sic] a game for us".

In response to today's announcement, HBO released the following statement. With that access, according to the indictment, Mesri stole unaired episodes of shows like Ballers and Curb Your Enthusiasm, as well as scripts for other shows, including Game of Thrones. If we follow this metaphor out, then, Kim seems to be claiming that the U.S. Attorney's Office threatens to wipe out all civilization in the pursuit of an worldwide criminal.

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