Game Of Thrones has done it again. Not only becoming the most watched TV show in the history of HBO, the season five finale has also broken piracy records.
In just eight hours after the finale, Mother's Mercy, was broadcast, the episode had already racked up a whopping 1.5 million downloads, according to TorrentFreak.
The file sharing news website said it had never seen a show downloaded en masse in such huge numbers over such a short period of time.
Not only is the finale episode expected to reach 10 million downloads much faster than any previous episode of Game Of Thrones, but this episode has also broken the all-time record for the number of people sharing the same single torrent file at the same time, which was previously 250,000.
New record for most people downloading at the same time
As of 7.45pm CEST (6.45pm BST, 10.45am PDT) on 15 June, there were 258,131 people sharing the single torrent file of Mother's Mercy at the same time, with 181,075 people sharing a complete copy of the file (known as seeders), while 77,056 people were still downloading the file (known as peers).
When the fifth season of Game Of Thrones debuted in early April, it set new download records as four episodes were leaked and uploaded to torrent websites.
Within just the first week of the show broadcasting on HBO, the combined downloads of the leaked episodes and ripped versions of the actual broadcast topped 32 million.
TorrentFreak said the users illegally downloading the season five finale come from many countries around the world. The most popular countries for downloading the show this time are the US, the UK, Canada and India.
While statistics from the first week of Game Of Thrones broadcasting show that once the show was broadcast, users preferred to download higher definition versions of 720p and 1080p, rather than the low video quality 480p versions, this trend has reversed with the last episode.
Downloaders not so concerned about video quality
For Mother's Mercy, it was clear that users couldn't wait to finish downloading the file so they could watch it, never mind the video quality, as downloads of the 480p versions were by far the most popular.
HBO was extremely unhappy about the leaked episodes at the beginning of Game Of Thrones season five.
The cable channel sent out thousands of takedown notices and warnings to internet users who either shared links to the torrents publicly, watched a low quality live stream over Periscope, or whom were flagged to have downloaded the episode by their internet service provider (ISP) in the US.
While the internet user's name was not known, only their IP address, HBO hoped to scare internet users into desisting from illegally downloading future episodes of Game Of Thrones, but this has clearly proved to be completely fruitless.