Ali Michael Pictures: American Fashion Model Targeted in Naked Photos Hack

By Zachary Stieber
Zachary Stieber
Zachary Stieber
Reporter
Zachary Stieber covers U.S. and world news. He is based in Maryland.
September 2, 2014 Updated: September 2, 2014

American fashion model Ali Michael has been named as one of the many victims of the widespread hack that has left hundreds of graphic images online.

The 24-year-old model appears to have had over 100 pictures leaked in the hack, which reportedly became possible due to “a very targeted attack on user names, passwords and security questions,” Apple said Tuesday.

The pictures are primarily appearing on 4Chan and Reddit’s picture sharing website Imgur, although a number of other websites are also involved. Some of the pictures are also circulating on Twitter.

Representatives of Twitter, Reddit and Imgur did not respond to messages seeking comment.

One album of 176 pictures that are allegedly all of Michael has appeared on Imgur and been linked to on Reddit.

Michael doesn’t appear to have commented on the pictures as of yet.

While Apple said its engineers have determined that hackers breached individual accounts and didn’t obtain general access to a pair of the company’s services — iCloud and Find my iPhone — a number of the websites such as 4Chan removed images of some of the targets in response to copyright complaints.

Jennifer Lawrence and Kate Upton are among the victims who quickly contacted authorities once the leaks started on Sunday.

Law enforcement inquiries likely will take days or weeks to complete. The FBI offered no details on its efforts to identify people responsible for stealing the images but the agency said Monday it was aware of the breach and addressing the matter.

Similar investigations have involved the use of search warrants and digital forensics to determine how hackers obtained everything from Paris Hilton’s contact list to nude photos of actresses Scarlett Johansson and Mila Kunis.

ark Rasch, a former federal prosecutor who specialized in computer crimes, said investigators will focus on who’s responsible for the theft of the photos, the tools they used, and the idiosyncrasies of how they program.

“There is a digital trail,” Rasch said. “What you hope for (is) the people aren’t very good at what they do, that they screw up, that they (upset) other hackers. Or that they leave a trail.”

Rasch said authorities will sometimes catch an early break or get a tip that leads them to suspects. The investigations are difficult, he said, but “It’s equally difficult to get away with it scot free.”

Mickey Osterreicher, a media lawyer and general counsel for the National Press Photographers Association, said a successful copyright complaint could scrub the images from a site forever, butLawrence and other celebrities will have to remain vigilant and keep filing takedown notices.

“You have to go to each place,” he said. “It’s kind of like playing whack-a-mole.”

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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Zachary Stieber
Zachary Stieber covers U.S. and world news. He is based in Maryland.