Hundreds of intimate pictures of female celebrities, including Oscar-winning actor Jennifer Lawrence, Mary Elizabeth Winstead, and more; were leaked overnight after being stolen from their private collections and posted on infamous web forum 4chan.
How the pictures were obtained remains unconfirmed, but anonymous 4chan users claimed that they were drawn from celebrities’ iCloud accounts. Lawrence herself had complained about the iCloud service, which allows iPad, iPhone and Mac users to synchronise images and other data between devices, in an MTV interview earlier this year.
The images were uploaded to 4chan, the anonymous image sharing website, by users offering more explicit material in exchange for paypal and bitcoin payments. Within hours the photos were being shared on Twitter, and a so called ‘Master List’ has since circulated, identifying the 100 other stars allegedly targeted in one of the biggest mass breaches of celebrity privacy in history. Those named include the singer Rihanna, models Kate Upton and Cara Delevingne and the US footballer Hope Solo.
Apple’s response to the incident is “Tim Cook promises extra iCloud security. Will it work?” In a world were everything is public until you make it private, cloud security is key. iCloud is focusing on photos to store online but let this also be a warning for Microsoft, Google, Dropbox, box.com and more … Can you image that companies confidential data that’s stored in the cloud is hacked?!? I feel the opportunity for an additional security business and the time to educate the world to make everybody aware of the risks of the online world.