Added on 04-Mar-2012
Hackers infiltrated Sony's computer system and illegally downloaded Michael Jackson's entire back catalog
Somewhere in the world -- and Sony Music would love to know where -- someone is sitting on unreleased recordings of Michael Jackson singing with will.i.am and Queen frontman Freddie Mercury.
That's the word from Britain's Sunday Times, which reports that in April 2011, hackers infiltrated Sony's computer system and illegally downloaded the King of Pop's entire back catalog -- a collection of 50,000 digital files that includes a number of unreleased tracks.
"It caused them to check their systems and they found the breach," a source told the newspaper. "There was a degree of sophistication. Sony identified the weakness and plugged the gap."
Sony paid Jackson's estate $250 million for the recordings back in 2010, and according to the source, everything the label acquired was compromised in the cyber attack. That means the digital crooks have their hands on a treasure trove of unheard material dating back to 'Off the Wall' and 'Thriller.'
At this time, it's unclear what the hackers will do with the music, but if they're smart, they'll slowly roll the songs out over a period of years, making obsessive fans shell out big bucks for each new CD.
If only there were some place they could look for a business model.
Edited By GABRIELLA OSAMOR