As 'Game of Thrones' fans prepared for the premiere of the much anticipated premiere of Season Five, it was naturally a huge surprise when episodes one, two, three and four started appearing on torrent trackers such as Torrent Freak, The Pirate Bay and Kickass Torrents. When it was quickly established that the leak was legitimate, fans swarmed to download the content with TorrentFreak estimating the episodes were downloaded "more than 100,000 times in just three hours". The source of the leak is speculated to originate from watermarked preview copies sent to members of the press.
HBO has now released a statement on the matter which confirms the leak. "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. We're actively assessing how this breach occurred."
As tantalising as the leak may be, many fans have elected to wait it out for high definition versions.