Increasingly, there have been news headlines about companies losing information to hackers, or hackers taking information and holding it for ransom. The television provider HBO was recently hacked with close to 1.5 terabytes of information stolen. This data included scripts, emails, and unaired episodes of their most popular shows such as Game of Thrones, Ballers, and Room 104.

Games of Thrones image

Roderick Jones, the founder of Rubica (a cybersecurity and privacy firm), spoke on what he believes was the cause of HBO’s vulnerability that allowed the data to be stolen. HBO has been using old systems to store their data, more specifically an old version of windows installed on one of their systems. Jones theorizes that this created a rather large vulnerability, allowing the group “OurMine” to target high profile information, and demand at least six million dollars in bitcoin to return this data threatening to leak it otherwise. Not only were the servers of HBO hacked, but so were the official social media accounts of the company. OurMine posted on the official HBO Twitter,

“HI, OurMine are here, we are just testing your security, HBO team please contact us to upgrade the security”

This was simply to taunt HBO into giving in to their demands. After this stunt, HBO offered the group $250,000 to return their information. Despite negotiations, the stolen data was leaked to the public anyway, with the criminals claiming that their demands had not been met on time.

You may have noticed the similarity between this incident and the wannacry ransomware attack. Indeed, they are very similar. This personifies just how important it is to keep your systems secure and up to date, as more and more companies are losing data, money, and thus customers to these cyber attacks. This has increasingly become an issue for companies and individuals alike, who are storing bank data, tax information, and other sensitive data on their computers. This proves just how important it is to keep your systems up to date to keep your data secure.