A hacking group called TheDarkOverlord has taken responsibility for the Netflix leak, which took place early Saturday morning, posting multiple statements to their Twitter account from Pastebin and the Pirate Bay. According to the statements and a report by TorrentFreak, the hacking group released the first episode of the season after attempts to extort the streaming giant proved fruitless. Then, the group released episodes 2-10 after receiving no response.
“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 (Hello, 126.96.36.199!)—yet they continue to remain unresponsive,” the hacking group wrote. “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.”
According to TorrentFreak, the leaked episodes were part of a larger job in late 2016 where the hackers accessed servers of post-production studio Larson Studios and allegedly obtained material from other production companies, including ABC, National Geographic, Fox, and IFC. This upcoming season of the Netflix original contains 13 episodes, but only 10 were available at the time of the hack.
TheDarkOverlord told TorrentFreak it was in the process of extorting the studio and had obtained a signed contract promising the hacking group’s conditional silence, but the studio failed to follow through with monetary compensation before the deadline.
The hacking group didn’t explain why it decided to extort Netflix months later, but it wrote in a message that “there’s still time” for the other networks to comply with their demands.
“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,” the statement reads.
A Netflix spokesperson responded to the Daily Dot’s request for comment with the following statement:
“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.”