An individual or group going by the name “thedarkoverlord” has posted much of the upcoming season of Netflix’s series Orange is the New Black, apparently as punishment for not paying an extortion demand. According to information obtained by Databreaches.net, the episodes were stolen from a post-production studio along with episodes from dozens of other television programs on Netflix and other networks. And the person or people behind the breach are not attempting to further extort the networks that distribute the programs.
Whoever is behind “thedarkoverlord” has over the past year breached a number of small and mid-sized organizations’ networks, apparently by exploiting common vulnerabilities in their websites to gain access. In each case, according to Twitter posts and Pastebin notes by the hacker or hackers, they have posted proof of breaches to GitHub and attempted to extort payments in bitcoins from the victims, threatening to dump customer data and other records if they failed to comply. One target was a US Navy supplier, according to a report from DataBreaches.net (though no sensitive information was part of the breach).
Late last year, thedarkoverlord managed to stumble into a mother lode, apparently gaining access to the network of Larson Studios, an audio post-production company that serves many of the major television production companies. And with that access, they managed to steal nine episodes of the upcoming season of Netflix’s series, Orange is the New Black and claimed to have accessed content from 36 television series and one film. They attempted to extort 50 bitcoins from Larson, setting a January deadline. And when that deadline passed, they apparently decided to move on to extorting each of the companies producing the content individually.
On April 29, after Netflix failed to respond to their extortion demands, thedarkoverlord posted links on Twitter to torrents of the episodes. In a Pastebin post on the same day linked from thedarkoverlord’s Twitter account, they wrote:
We’re back again. Did you miss us? Of course, you did. We’re willing to bet Netflix did as well. Speaking of which, Netflix clearly received our message considering they’ve made public statements and was one of the first people to download a fresh copy of their own property, yet they continue to remain unresponsive. With this information in mind (and the fact that leaving people on cliffhangers isn’t fun) we’ve decided to release Episodes 2-10 of “Orange Is The New Black” Season 5 after many lengthy discussions at the office where alcohol was present. Do note that there are 13 episodes. However, we were so early when we acquired the copies that post hadn’t gotten around to Episodes 11-13. Perhaps Netflix will consider releasing the season earlier now that the cat’s out of the bag?
We’re not quite done yet, though. We’re calling you out: ABC, National Geographic, Fox, IFC, and of course Netflix, still. There’s more Netflix on the feasting menu soon (in addition to the other studios, of course), but we’ll get to that later. Enjoy the fruits of our labour.
Ars contacted Larson, but was told no executive was available for comment on the breach. Lionsgate, the company that produces Orange for Netflix, also did not respond to requests for comment. Netflix issued a statement to press on the breach, stating: “We are aware of the situation. A production vendor used by several major TV studios had its security compromised and the appropriate law enforcement authorities are involved.”
However, a check of Larson’s website suggests one possible explanation for how the breach happened: the site is based on Microsoft’s discontinued FrontPage web publishing tool, once part of the Office suite.
Listing image by Lionsgate/Netflix
Source: SANS ISC SecNewsFeed @ May 1, 2017 at 12:39PM