The leaking of hundreds of private and intimate photographs of Hollywood celebrities cast new doubt on the security of popular online storage sites as investigators probed for explanations of the high-profile breach, the Washington Post reports. The FBI said it was looking into the leaks. An Apple spokesman said the company was “actively investigating” apparent breaches of some of its iCloud accounts. Privacy experts joined Hollywood publicists in denouncing the leaks, which flooded websites over the weekend with nude images of more than a half-dozen A-list actresses, including Oscar winner Jennifer Lawrence.
The breach prompted concerns about the security of photographs, videos and documents that millions of Americans store in popular Internet “cloud” accounts. Lawrence's photographs allegedly were obtained from a personal iCloud account, a service operated by Apple and often used to automatically store photos taken by a user's mobile phone. Experts said the hackers appear to have targeted celebrity accounts, suggesting that it is unlikely that ordinary users' files were compromised. Still, with official investigations just getting underway, it was unclear precisely what methods were used to steal the photos and whether the thefts pointed to broader vulnerabilities.