The recent nude photo scandal involving thousands of photos allegedly belonging to top Hollywood celebrities has drawn the attention of the FBI.
Starlets including Jennifer Lawrence, Victoria Justice, Kate Upton, and even Ariana Grande (who denies that the photos are of her), found their accounts hacked and private images are now being shared across the internet.
The situation has led to a federal investigation as the authorities begin working to hunt down the individual or individuals responsible for this gross invasion of privacy.
While it’s still uncertain exactly how the hacker or hackers gained access to so many celebrity photos, early consensus is that Apple’s iCloud service suffered a massive security breach which made the leak possible.
Apple has since responded to the blame by saying that the company will be doing a thorough investigation into the matter.
— TMZ (@TMZ) September 2, 2014
The total number of famous women believed to be affected by the hack is speculated to reach nearly 100 in all.
It’s likely that this leak was years in the making as one victim, actress Mary Elizabeth Winstead, said that her “photos were deleted a long time ago”.
This suggests that the person or persons responsible have been meticulously gathering the private photos and videos of these women for a long time. Something that is, as Winstead puts it, “creepy”.
To those of you looking at photos I took with my husband years ago in the privacy of our home, hope you feel great about yourselves.
— Mary E. Winstead (@M_E_Winstead) August 31, 2014
This isn’t the first time that the FBI has launched a major investigation to bring a celebrity nude hacker to justice.
They captured the man responsible for the Scarlett Johannson and Christina Aguilera leaks. A court later sentenced him to ten years in prison.
— Miss Sudo -S (@miss_sudo) September 2, 2014
Although the circumstances are different, the serious nature of this hack and the amount of famous victims involved strongly suggests that there can and will be serious legal ramifications for those involved should federal authorities identify them.
Perhaps a serious legal and financial penalty could serve to warn hackers that there are serious real world consequences for harmful and illegal online activities.