A hacker claimed that he has stolen the fifth season of popular prison drama-comedy Orange is the New Black, which is not scheduled to be released until June 9.
The hacker, who goes by the name The Dark Overlord, is now threatening to release the episodes unless Netflix pays a ransom.
Hacker Steals 'Orange Is The New Black' Season 5
In a statement, Netflix revealed that it is aware of the situation. The hacker was seemingly able to infiltrate the system of a production vendor that is used by several major TV studios. The vendor's security was compromised, and the appropriate authorities have already been involved to handle the case, including the FBI.
The Dark Overlord is said to have uploaded the first episode of season five of Orange is the New Black to several file-sharing websites, though the authenticity of the video has not yet been confirmed. The hacker also claims to have stolen content from other companies, with a tweet hinting that these include Fox, National Geographic, ABC, and IFC.
The hacker is now blackmailing Netflix, with the threat if he is not paid a ransom, the entire season five of Orange is the New Black will be leaked.
The amount that the hacker is demanding remains undisclosed. Other details of the case also remain largely unknown, including the vendor that suffered the security breach and the method that the hacker used to steal the videos.
'Orange Is The New Black' Success
The fourth season of Orange is the New Black, which featured issues such as overcrowded prisons and guards with no adequate training, ended on a depressing note. The show took a dark turn last season, with a deeper look at what life behind bars looks like.
Orange is the New Black has won three straight SAG Awards for comedy ensemble, and has received Emmy nominations for Outstanding Drama and Outstanding Comedy.
The popularity of the show, however, came with certain problems. In its third season, Orange is the New Black received the title as the most illegally downloaded series, as Netflix has not been able to keep in step with the pirates that are streaming the show.
The fifth season of acclaimed political drama House of Cards will launch on Netflix as part of the lineup for May 2017, in addition to the fourth season of Sherlock, the second season of Chelsea, and the third season of The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt.
Netflix recently reached the 100 million mark in its number of subscribers globally, showing that a significant number of customers now prefer online video streaming compared to traditional content channels such as TV.
However, Netflix has a new competitor in the on-demand streaming service industry with the launch of YouTube TV.
YouTube TV, which charges $35 per month, will be made widely available over the largest markets in the United States over the year. The four major networks - ANC, CBS, NBC, and Fox - have all signed up with YouTube TV, propelling the service as a legitimate challenger to Netflix.