Hackers have been keeping investigators busy in #Hollywood as of late. In April, an overseas hacking collective calling themselves "thedarklord" released most of the upcoming season of Netflix's "Orange is the New Black" and claims to still possess shows from ABC, IFC, Fox, National Geographic, and other networks. Now, another group says they have stolen a major summer blockbuster movie and will start leaking it online in the coming days if Disney doesn't pay them a hefty ransom.

Studio is working with FBI and refuses to pay hackers

During a "town hall" meeting with employees of Disney-owned ABC on Monday night, CEO Bob Iger told those in attendance that a major hack had affected the studio.

Advertisements
Advertisements

It was not released at the time what movie had been stolen, but Deadline Hollywood has reported that the film in question is one of Disney's tent pole summer releases: "#pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales".

According to Iger, the hackers have demanded an undisclosed but substantial amount of money via Bitcoin, similar to the ransom request in the "Orange in the New Black" hack. As expected, Disney is refusing to cooperate with the request and has been working with the FBI to trace the source of the hack and blackmail threats.

Threats have indicated that the movie will be leaked in pieces if the studio does not respond with payment. Initially, 5 minutes will be posted online, followed by a series of 20-minute segments until money is received.

The latest installment of "Pirates of the Caribbean" is set to hit theaters on May 26th, so it should be known within the next few days if the hackers do indeed follow through on their threats.

Advertisements

Hollywood hacks are not new, but becoming more popular

Hollywood, and the film industry, in general, has been a popular target for hackers for a number of years. However, it is only recently that financial demands have come into play.

The Sony hack of 2014 really proved the effect that hacking can have on the industry, costing many reputations and a few jobs. The leak saw 5 films posted online, plus internal company documents, like the salary and personal information of anyone involved in with the studio. It would seem that now hackers know the information they can find is valuable and it is possible that people may pay it to keep it hidden.

THR recently posted that there has been a massive increase in the number of hacks over the past six months, with not only studios but talent agencies being targeted. According to that piece, the volume of attacks on Hollywood has reportedly "overwhelmed" the resources of the FBI's Los Angeles offices, to the point that some firms have quietly been suggested to give in to the hackers' requests. #Johnny Depp