Whoever stole nude photos of Jennifer Lawrence, Kate Upton, and numerous other female celebrities from a cloud-based server and posted them online is certain to face an intimidating list of criminal and civil charges, once that person is identified and apprehended.
But one man who tried to capitalize on the celebrity’s victimization by claiming to be the leaker is now in a panic, vehemently denying that he has anything to do with the massive security breach.
Bryan Hamade, a 27-year-old server administrator for a company called Southern Digital Media, who lives in Lawrenceville, Georgia, posted a screenshot of his computer online, BuzzFeed reported Monday. Hamade used the screen name “BluntMastermind,” a name he had used online before.
The screenshot purportedly showed folders containing the surreptitiously obtained nude photos — many of which are apparently fake, though reps for both Jennifer Lawrence and Kate Upton have confirmed they are real and threatened legal action.
The private nude photos were posted by a user of the internet forum 4chan, a site infamous for internet hoaxes, pranks, and often cruel trolling. Last December, a 20-year-old Canadian college student attempted to commit suicide by setting his dorm room on fire while live webcasting the suicide attempt via 4Chan, as about 200 4Chan users watched, many cheering him on with online comments (the student was rescued by firefighters).
Unfortunately for Bryan Hamade, the screenshot also contained the name of his computer’s hard drive and network drive, information that the amateur digital sleuths of Reddit used to trace back to his previous posts and identify him as the alleged leaker of the Lawrence and Upton nudes, as well as many more au naturel pics of other famous women.
Now Hamade says that his life may be ruined by what he calls “the stupidest thing I’ve done.”
Not exactly covering himself in glory in any case, Hamade told BuzzFeed that he was attempting to run a scam in which other users would pay him for the photos in the digital currency BitCoin — in effect exploiting the embarrassment of Jennifer Lawrence and Kate Upton to make a few bucks.
“It’s been a nightmare and I haven’t slept in 34 hours now,” a desperate Hamade said Monday morning. “4chan users are harassing me with non-stop phone calls and emails. They email me constantly, emailing saying they’ll hack my personal websites and keep calling my phone, calling me a f** and then hanging up. They also said they’ll hack my mom’s site, so I took it down.”
Hamade says he is now seeking a lawyer to defend himself against any charges that may be brought against him. He also says he is looking for the true leaker.
“The real guy is on 4chan posting intermittently,” Hamade said of the Jennifer Lawrence nude photo thief. “He’s most likely the one behind it, but it does seem the photos passed around to multiple people before being leaked, so it may just be someone who has them and didn’t hack to get them.”