Apple iCloud hack? Nude photos of Jennifer Lawrence, Kate Upton and other celebs leaked

Nude photos purportedly showing many top stars, including Oscar-winner Jennifer Lawrence and pop star Rihanna, bounced around social media Sunday, in an apparent massive hacking leak, US media reported.


"It's so weird and hard how people take your privacy away from you," Lawrence said in a tweet. The actress' agent, meanwhile, vowed to take legal action. "This is a flagrant violation of privacy. The authorities have been contacted and will prosecute anyone who posts the stolen photos of Jennifer Lawrence," her representative told TMZ entertainment website.


Word of the images began spreading early Sunday, amid reports that the photos had been obtained by allegedly hacking iCloud accounts, Mashable and other media reported. Among the celebrities whose pictures allegedly were stolen and posted online were Avril Lavigne, Amber Heard, Gabrielle Union, Hayden Pannettiere and Hope Solo, according to Mashable.


Other celebrities targeted were Kate Upton, Hillary Duff, Jenny McCarthy, Kaley Cuoco, Kate Bosworth, Keke Palmer and Kim Kardashian. Former Nickelodeon star and singer Victoria Justice said the images claiming to show her naked body were anything but the real deal. "These so called nudes of me are FAKE people. Let me nip this in the bud right now. *pun intended*" she tweeted.




On Reddit, a subreddit dedicated to the leaks shot up to the top of the popularity charts and even managed to outrank the website itself in Alexa rankings. With users posting leaked images on Imgur, the photo sharing service was also forced to take down a number of uploads that claimed to be from the leak. However, as messages on the subreddit suggest, a bunch of users had already downloaded images to local drives before they were taken down.


As for the origin of the leak, Gawker says an anonymous user on 4chan claimed to have access to celebrities' personal photos and wanted Bitcoin and monetary donations to a PayPal account before they were released. It would seem the user was also in touch with media outlets and named TMZ as one of the contenders to get the pictures.


However, reports about iCloud being hacked allowing the attacker to spread the personal photos have so far only stayed in the realm of speculation. Apple has not officially commented on this issue, but iCloud has been the target of recent efforts by hackers and researchers. Activation bypass tools such as doulCi exist in the wild, while earlier this year some Australian iPad and iPhone owners found their devices remotely locked, but Apple has said that iCloud remains secure. 


With inputs from AFP

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