Nude pictures of Jennifer Lawrence and Kate Upton have leaked online, with a source posting the pictures on the free-for-all image-sharing site 4chan.
The nude pictures showed up this weekend and quickly spread. On the link-sharing site Reddit, some users pointed out that the photos may have come from the same source, as they appeared to be taken in the same location.
Within minutes the nude leaks extended to close to a dozen celebrities, including Ariana Grande, Krysten Ritter, and Victoria Justice. As Hollywood Take explained, the nude pictures appeared to be part of some kind of extortion scheme:
It is unclear exactly how or why these naked photos leaked online, though it seems someone is trying to sell them in exchange for Bitcoins. From there they appeared on 4chan and are now showing up in various Reddit and Imgur posts.
The source of the nude Kate Upton and Jennifer Lawrence pictures could be in for some trouble. Authorities have been cracking down on hackers who steal and release nude photos.
Police in Florida targeted Christopher Chaney, a 35-year-old who released pictures of a number of celebrities including Scarlett Johansson and Mila Kunis. Police said Chaney hacked e-mails almost daily for two years to obtain access to accounts of 50 people in the entertainment industry.
In California, FBI agents arrested 19-year-old James Abrahams, who they said threatened Miss Teen USA contestant Cassidy Wolf. Authorities said Abrahams hacked into her webcam, taking nude pictures and then threatening to release them if she did not send more.
But Wolf instead went to authorities, who were able to track down Abrahams. They say he used the same ruse on a number of other women.
“Abrahams used malicious software to disguise his identity in order to capture nude photos or videos of victims through remote operation of cameras on their home computers without their consent,” a police report said.
A number of celebrities have been caught in nude picture scandals, though not all have pursued legal action. When a naked Snapchat emerged this weekend of 5 Seconds of Summer singer Calum Hood, he took the opportunity to joke about it on Twitter.
Nude pictures have also leaked of Selena Gomez, though some speculate that the release may have been orchestrated.
Uploader Lakalel33 wrote that Gomez’s PR team released the images to help boost her media profile:
“No doubt Selena Gomez will feign being shocked and embarrassed by the leaking of these private nude pictures, and she will try to claim that her cell phone was hacked so that no one will state the obvious that her PR team leaked these pictures for attention.”
The source of the nude Kate Upton and Jennifer Lawrence pictures has not been determined, and the pictures themselves have not been verified as real.