Season eight of Game of Thrones has been hit by all manner of leaks this year as the series wraps up George RR Martin’s epic saga of ice and fire. Some breach or other including accidental has led to details from each episode of season eight becoming available before transmission this year. Only last week the series was hit with a purported leak in which details from episodes five and six surfaced online and social media. The most recent leaks for episode five, at least, turned out to be fairly accurate which means details about the finale could be as well.
Will Game of Thrones season 8, episode 6 be leaked in full?
The short answer is that we just don’t know at this stage but given the number of breaches, it would be unsurprising if it did.
In 2017, the season seven script was leaked online before the finale with shocking twists and turns spoilt for fans.
Speaking to Express.co.uk, James Slaby, director of cyber protection at Acronis said: “Game of Thrones is one of the most popular TV shows in history, so the value of that intellectual property makes it a juicy target for hackers.”
According to figures from British insurers Lloyd’s, companies lose an estimated £311 billion ($400 billion) to hackers each year with Slaby urging business to make security a top priority.
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He’s not alone, Ramsés Gallego of IT governance and security organisation ISACA said it was down to Game of Thrones’ universal popularity that made it a target.
Gallego explained: “So if I’m a hacker, I’m going for the big fish and if I succeed I get the prize. If I don’t succeed, no one will know.”
On whether there would be more leaks, Gallego said it was almost certain Game of Thrones would be facing further breaches.
“We have seen it in the past, we’ve seen it in the present and we will see it in the future,” he added.
According to both of Gallego and Slaby, these breaches – rather than accidental ones – are likely to come from inside the company from individuals with access being the ones to leak information.
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Slaby said: “The more people involved into film production, the more chances an attacker has to get access to the IP (scripts, actual video content).
“For GoT the estimated full production team is as high as 3,589 people which represents the size of a large enterprise. Similar training as for a regular organization about safety in the digital space should be provided to the cast and production team.”
He went on to warn those tempted to watch leaked content to be careful, saying: “Any hugely successful pop-culture phenomenon like GoT can provide criminals with the bait they need to lure unsuspecting victims.
“So, you need to be wary of downloading pirated content, or clicking on email attachments that promise spoilers for unreleased episodes, and so on.”
HBO has not officially revealed the source of the breaches.
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WARNING: This article contains spoilers from Game of Thrones season 8
Game of Thrones season 8 leaks timeline:
• Episode one plot details were leaked on Reddit weeks before the season eight premiere.
On top of that, episode one was accidentally made available early by streaming platform DirecTV ahead of broadcast.
• Episode two was mistakenly put on Amazon Prime Germany ahead of time.
A spokesperson for the company later told BBC News: “We regret that for a short time Amazon customers in Germany were able to access episode two of season eight of Game of Thrones.
“This was an error and has been rectified,” they added.
• Episode three apparently managed to avoid any breaches.
• Episode four saw a clip of Missandei’s (played by Nathalie Emmanuel) execution end up online before broadcast.
• Episode five and six details were put on social media. The information on the penultimate instalment turned out to be fairly accurate. Express.co.uk has approached HBO and Sky Atlantic for comment on these latest leaks.
Game of Thrones season 8 airs on HBO in the US on Sundays 9pm ET and on Sky Atlantic and NOW TV in the UK on Mondays at 2am & 9pm BST
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