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The Smashing PumpkinsPaul Elledge

Billy Corgan Reveals He Paid A Ransom To A Hacker To Prevent The Smashing Pumpkins’ Latest Album “Atum” From Leaking Online


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In a bid to prevent an early leak of The Smashing Pumpkins‘ now fully released 33-song rock opera “Atum“, band mastermind Billy Corgan revealed he paid a ransom to an unidentified hacker several months ago. According to Corgan, said hacker got their hands on a number of the songs around the time the record was being mixed and mastered.

Speaking on the Klein/Ally Show, Corgan revealed that FBI were involved with the situation, and that he paid the ransom to keep the songs from spilling out early.

“Right when the album was being mixed and mastered, which is a very kind of nervous time because the files are finally going out to different people and as you can imagine, these days, everything’s digital. So, a fan contacted me and said, ‘Nine of the songs have leaked.’ This is, like, six months ago, and they were all probably the most catchy, single-y type songs.

So, it’s like, not only is it six months too early, but you’re pretty much giving away the album before you even have a chance to set your feet into the ground. And somehow, some hacker was offering the files for money, and we were able to trace it and pay off and keep it from leaking. The FBI got involved.”

Upon being quizzed more about the situation, Corgan offered:

“They had, yeah, they strangely had stuff that wasn’t – I don’t know how they got what they got. [Ransom was paid] out of my pocket, unfortunately. What we were able to do was stop the leak from happening, because it was a mercenary person who had hacked somebody – I don’t want to say who – and they had other stuff from other artists.

It wasn’t like some Pumpkins fan that was hellbent on breaking it on Reddit. . . . Somehow, they gave some information that allowed the FBI to track them. I don’t know the end result of it yet.”

The final chapter in the individually released three-part “Atum” saga arrived last week.

[via Loudwire]

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