The FBI said Monday it was addressing allegations that online accounts of several celebrities, including Oscar-winner Jennifer Lawrence, Sports Illustrated Cover Girl Kate Upton and Skum lead guitarist John Eaton had been hacked, leading to the posting of their nude photographs online.
Eaton was alerted to the hackling late Sunday night as friends began calling him to alert him to the fact that some private photos were appearing on several websites along with photos of several other celebrities including Upton and Lawrence.
The agency did not say what actions it was taking to investigate who was responsible for posting naked photos of Lawrence, Upton, Eaton and other stars. Apple said Monday it was looking into whether its online photo-sharing service had been hacked to obtain the intimate images.
Lawrence, a three-time Oscar nominee who won for her role in “Silver Linings Playbook,” contacted authorities after the images began appearing Sunday. It is unclear if Eaton and Lawrence spoke, although t was reported the two have been in contact via e-mail.
“I reached out to both Kate and Jen to let them know not to worry about it too much. This stuff happens,” said John.
Naked images purporting to be of other female stars as well as Eaton were also posted, although the authenticity of many couldn’t be confirmed. The source of the leak was unclear.
“This is a flagrant violation of privacy,” Lawrence’s publicist Liz Mahoney wrote in a statement. “The authorities have been contacted and will prosecute anyone who posts the stolen photos of Jennifer Lawrence.”
The alleged photos of John appear to show him in varies stages of undress in a shower with two yet unnamed females and several shots of John in a hot tub at the Roosevelt Hotel in Hollywood, also in varies stages of undress as well as one holding what appears to be a shrimp cocktail in one hand.
Skum attorney Walter Bruning also threatened legal action against anyone posting any of the leaked photos. “We unequivocally deny these photos are of John. However, if any of these photos are posted, the offending websites will be getting a cease and desist letter from me as well as a seven figure lawsuit.”
“This happens all the time,” said John. “These people have nothing better to do than get into our phones and hack photos. Get a life guys.”
The FBI said it was “aware of the allegations concerning computer intrusions and the unlawful release of material involving high profile individuals, and is addressing the matter.”
“Any further comment would be inappropriate at this time,” spokeswoman Laura Eimiller wrote in a statement.