Nikolaj Coster-Waldau claims HBO hackers have cast’s personal information

Jaime Lannister pondering whether or not he'll have to cancel his credit cards.

Jaime Lannister pondering whether or not he’ll have to cancel his credit cards.

When Nikolaj Coster-Waldau got a call from HBO a few weeks ago, he assumed the worst: that his dashing yet dastardly Jaime Lannister wouldn’t see the final season of Game Of Thrones. But fortunately for viewers (although unfortunately for Coster-Waldau and other cast members), it wasn’t a seismic plot shift — just more bad news about the recent hack of HBO.

“At first I was thinking, ‘Oh, I’m being killed off [Thrones]! I’m not going to make it to Season 8,” Coster-Waldau said in a recent interview with the Daily Beast. “But then they go, ‘You know, we just want to inform you that we had a hack. It’s kind of a big problem with HBO. We don’t know quite how bad it is, but it looks like all of your guys’ info has been leaked.'”

“And they said, ‘Oh, your emails, your phone numbers, all of the info is out there,’ ” he continued. “I said, ‘That’s not good! What are we gonna do?’ And they go, ‘Well, we don’t know.’ ”

The Danish actor said the situation was “bizarre,” because after HBO was hacked in 2015 and the first four episodes of season 5 were leaked not long after the premiere, much was made about increasing online security at the network.

“Last year we spent so much time and there was so much hoo-ha about email security because there had been a leak the year before. We had to send out for the scripts, get all-new email accounts, get two-step verified, and all this,” he said.

Coster-Waldau added that the hackers informed HBO that they have “all of the Thrones cast members’ personal information,” and that he’s not sure what the next steps will be.

“Well, I’m waiting to find out,” he said. “They told us they were gonna call us and let us know what to do, and they haven’t. So I guess they’re still trying to figure it out.”

The full interview is available here.

24 responses

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    1. Sort your shit out HBO. It’s one thing to have episodes leaked- yet again. But putting your employees at risk is a complete disgrace.

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    2. According to Verizon, 50% of all security issues are caused by people inside the affected organisation…

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    3. Its fucking disgusting! Its bad enough when scripts get leaked, but when personal information gets leaked that’s very serious. I would guess the cast and the many people who are involved with the production will have to change their phone numbers, email addresses, etc yet again 🙁

      Its all well and good having a double layer of password security for those who need access to info on HBO’s servers, but seems like its the server itself that lacks security if it can be hacked into?

      HBO also need to tighten up the way they send releases of episodes to TV companies around the world before the time the episode is due to be broadcast. No idea how they do that – sending DVD’s or whatever media they use for copies via FEDEX, DHL or whoever. I would hope HBO don’t send episodes as video files over the internet to their agents, broadcasting companies, etc. as that’s asking for trouble!

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    4. Jen,

      Don’t they always get the call before filming of the new season starts?

      Anyway, I feel bad for the cast 🙁 This is a much bigger problem than a few leakes episodes. They need to get their shit together at HBO. And like Nikolaj said; they shouldn’t have offered to actually pay money (if they really did that).

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    5. Alright, so Jaime survives Season 7. Hope everyone wanted to know that. 😂

      Leaking their personal info would be the lowest of low. I don’t care about spoilers, personally, but don’t fuck with people’s personal info or families. 😠

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    6. Anyone who is watching these hacked episodes is enabling this.

      Considering that the actor who played Olly got death threats because his character stabbed Jon Snow, I do hope this personal info doesn’t get spread all over the internet.

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    7. biobi,

      Yeah; that comment struck me as Nikolaj giving a bit of BS to a reporter. They wouldn’t kill a character like Jaime off-screen between seasons unless something tragic would have happened to NCW.

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    8. I think he was saying he thought he was getting the call that he would die in season 8, since they’ve rapped up writing I assume they’ll make their phone calls now before scripts are out to everyone….. so Jamie survives the series? Or they just haven’t made those calls yet since they’re dealing with hacking nonsense.

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    9. Black walda,

      “At first I was thinking, ‘Oh, I’m being killed off [Thrones]! I’m not going to make it to Season 8,”

      The way he worded this makes it sound like he thought Jaime would just suddenly die between seasons. I’m assuming he meant that he’d die IN season 8, but he didn’t word it that way.

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    10. This is terrible but I could have sworn I read about personal info leaking among the initial reports of the leak. Not only that of Nikolaj’s info but other actors’ as well. I believe hackers even had personal info about D&D and e-mails they’ve sent. I’d also be worried if any of their files/e-mails contained anything about season 8. 😞 I hope HBO has done something or provided some guidance for the actors who had personal info leaked.

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    11. This is very damaging and it seems like an inside job. Reminds me of the movie The Net. The hackers the other day hacked into Twitter – witnessed it. It was their challenge to see if HBO had fixed their security issues with 3 tweets using HBO account. Apparently, not. If people are this smart to hack into a system, why not use those skills to do something positive. On the other hand, HBO not providing any proactive measures to employee’s whose personal information was taken (ie contacting credit report agencies, social security, etc.). That’s just being totally unprepared for such a large organization.

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    12. Frey pie,

      Will there even be calls for season 8? Isn’t the purpose of these calls to just tell actors that their role will be over after the next season, i.e. they can take on other projects if they want to – but since everyone’s role will be over next season, there’s not much use to calls anymore, is there?

      Anyway, this is pretty shitty. As other people have said, leaking episodes is one thing, but stealing personal information is another. It kind of baffles me that HBO has allowed this to happen.

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    13. There is technology out there to combat this stuff and bolster the silly password/memorization paradigm currently in place. It involves proximity, keyfobs, compartmentalization, continuous vulnerability analyses and rotating pub/priv encryption keys. But I doubt HBO has anything like that in place. Unfortunately, it really does come down to individual integrity. Given the compensation disparity in the industry, some inside folks are probably willing to sell their soul. Careless handling of sensitive info and phishing have become commonplace too.

      Not just the visible, famous folk are affected. Everyone suffers. Phone numbers must change, emails between execs about their projects and stars are embarrassing (as we saw with Sony) and access to direct deposit account numbers/SSNs are very troubling, but all that stuff should be isolated from content. They got both? Very troubling, indeed.

      Content must be available for multi-threaded access and CM (config management) during production but security must isolate that stuff from HR crap. Absolute centralized processing is damned expensive, introduces creative restrictions and a general hassle for everyone involved, so decentralization is necessary. But one bad apple and the house of cards destabilizes. It’s not an easy problem to resolve in a phenomenally creative entertainment industry.

      I predict that the idea of privacy and access techniques will change dramatically in the coming decades, for better or worse.

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    14. Phone numbers and email addresses are bad enough, but ultimately they’re just hassles that can be changed. But I heard home addresses were leaked, which could put the actors safety in danger, at the very least their privacy, from stalkers and crazed fans. I don’t know if there is a European equivalent to a social security number, but if that was leaked, too, then it just makes everything worse. HBO really needs to get its shit together. The actors must be pissed.

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    15. Ravyn,

      Believe me soc sec numbers are about 80% known. If you have been in US military or any fed gov job they were hacked long ago, as were early banking databases

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    16. Ravyn,

      To be fair,you could find out where most actors live anyway,especially if they are faily known ones like Nikolaj is,i mean that’s how tabloid sites make their living,by stalking celebrities to their homes and places they go .

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    17. Jen,

      Yeah given S7 has finished it seems a strange thing to say, the actors don’t yet have the scripts for S8 either so I assume he meant he was getting the death call before receiving the scripts too.

      That said, I really don’t see Jamie surviving the series either.

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