A data breach for the ages
Nude photographs of 101 celebrities leaked on the Internet
September 2, 2014 6:35 by Nadine Sayegh
On Sunday, August 31, reports from across the Internet began to surface claiming that celebrity nudes had been leaked.
The images, allegedly, first appeared on image-sharing platform, 4chan (which, contrary to a number of media reports, is not the name of the hacker), from a user claiming to have access to explicit images of celebrities such as actress Jennifer Lawrence and singer Rihanna.
It is important to note that other reports indicate that images were initially discussed on a forum known for sharing pornographic images called AnonIB.
The hacker grabbed the attention of online users and began to encourage them to offer him donations via PayPal or Bitcoin so that he/she could upload the images for the world to see.
There has been scrutiny as to how the hackers obtained access to the images, and many are reporting a breach in Apple’s iCloud.
This issue has raised so many concerns and has escalated so quickly that the United States Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) has stated that they are looking into the matter.
The Associated Press news agency has spoken to the FBI and they have stated that they “are aware of the allegations” and are in the process of “addressing the matter.”
Reports indicate that Apple has also stated that it is investigating the matter.
A report released earlier this week by Juniper Networks and RAND Corporation, which reveals just how much private data is worth on the cyber black market, can put things into perspective.
The study shows that social media details, tentatively, go for around $325 per account.
And while the threat is ever-present, there are steps users can take to protect their data.
Kipp’s sister publication, TRENDS, quotes Adrian Pickering, vice president of Juniper Networks MEA, who says in a written statement: “People can protect themselves through simple choices, such as using different passwords for each site that contains personal or financial information. Ultimately, even though users can’t see these threats, they don’t have to stay in the dark.”