'Game of Thrones': Season 5's First Four Episodes Leak Online
The episodes were downloaded over 100,000 times in the first few hours after hitting file-sharing sites.
Game of Thrones' fifth season has not yet begun to air on HBO, but several of the episodes are already available online illegally.
The first four episodes of the hit HBO drama's upcoming season have leaked to file-sharing sites, TorrentFreak reports. The episodes appear to come from screeners sent to TV reviewers.
During the first three hours that the new episodes were available, they were downloaded more than 100,000 times, according to TorrentFreak. The episodes were first available on private torrent site IPT but have since appeared on public outlets, including The Pirate Bay, Kickass Torrents and RARBG.
In response to the leak, HBO said in a statement that the network is working to find out who is responsible. "Sadly, it seems the leaked four episodes of the upcoming season of Game of Thrones originated from within a group approved by HBO to receive them," read the statement. "We're actively assessing how this breach occurred."
The series has long been a favorite of pirates. Previous seasons' episodes were illegally downloaded 7 million times between February and April, making Game of Thrones the most-pirated series in that time frame.
Game of Thrones' season-five premiere airs April 12 at 9 p.m. on HBO.