Disney CEO Bob Iger has reportedly confirmed that the company was not hacked and no movie was stolen by hackers. Reports of Disney having allegedly been hacked and held to ransom recently broke, just days before the much-anticipated release of the Pirates Of The Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales movie. However, the hackers' threat to release portions of the movie in parts appears to have been a bluff.
"To our knowledge we were not hacked," Iger told Yahoo Finance. "We had a threat of a hack of a movie being stolen. We decided to take it seriously but not react in the manner in which the person who was threatening us had required. We don't believe that it was real and nothing has happened."
Iger, however, refrained from mentioning which movie the hackers were threatening to leak. News of the hacking threat was taken seriously in light of a hacker/hacker group going by the pseudonym The Dark Overlord (TDO) having hacked, stolen and leaked episodes of the Orange Is The New Black TV series.
Iger's statement comes just a day after the release of the latest Pirates movie. Although Disney had not mentioned which of its films was threatened to be leaked by hackers, reports speculated that it was the Johnny Depp starrer, Pirates Of The Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales.
However, an unnamed alleged hacker going by the pseudonym "Darkness", told TorrentFreak that the movie under threat was Star Wars: The Last Jedi. Darkness claimed to have stolen an incomplete cut of the film and demanded a ransom of 2 bitcoins per month until September. The hacker also said that the movie wasn't hacked, but was given to him by "a friend who works at a post production company owned by [Lucasfilm]".
These claims have not been independently verified by IBTimes UK. It is likely that someone posing as a hacker may be attempting to live off on the success of the recent Netflix hack.
Hacking and online piracy
"Malicious hacking is an enormous problem and as ransomware catches up to online piracy, we are going to see the industry take some interesting steps towards innovative security practices," George Avetisov, CEO of biometric authentication firm HYPR Corp, told IBTimes UK. "This activity is profitable because it has shown to be lucrative in the past - especially among hospital networks who have paid large ransoms to hackers."
"The two worlds of hacking and piracy (also known as 'warez'), have been overlapped since the beginning of the computer underground, even back in the old days of dial-up Bulletin Board Systems (BBS)," Alex Heid, chief research officer at SecurityScorecard told IBTimes UK, explaining how the underground industry first sprang up.
"Hacking, phreaking, cracking, anarchy, and warez were often all separate yet overlapping interest groups and would often be abbreviated as H/P/C/A/W. Those who wished to pirate software would need to crack license protections, and the ecosystem was born," Heid added.