In the wake of the continuing celebrity nude photo leaks, online nude photo trading rings and hackers are finding new ways to continue to obtain illicit private photos of thousands of celebrities and regular women, alike.
Following Apple's tighter iCloud security, users of AnonIB's /stol message board, where anonymous users trade phishing secrets, take requests, and advertise their particular ripping skills, are now targeting the anonymous sharing app, Whisper. A /stol post from this past Saturday suggests that AnonIB users are posing as owners of escort services to entice women (many of whom they claim to be under age) to share nude pictures. "Anon, have you fished for images on Whisper? There are all sorts of opportunities there for girls who share their pics without second thought. I've gotten some nudes from some young teens, and have actually had a couple of hook-ups with hot girls as well," it reads.
"I literally tell them I'm looking to RECRUIT escorts," another post in the thread says. "Then I concoct a whole story. Give an 'interview,' tell them how much the 'agency' pays if they get hired, ask for pics and arrange a meeting/audition. Lots of girls seem to need money to feed their addictions I guess. General tip is just be friendly and not too pushy. You'll make your own way and figure it out."
Whisper's Editor-in-Chief, Neetzan Zimmerman told BuzzFeed News the company was alerted to the thread yesterday, but noted that, while the 17+ app polices the age of its users and offers full anonymity as well as private message features to flag moderators and report bullying, phishing and solicitation, the app can only do so much to protect users from this type of scam.
"In this case it's important to note that we're talking about individuals who are violating terms of service on both ends, since we don't allow solicitation of any kind," Zimmerman said, noting that, outside of flagged conversations, "there isn't much we can do because we specifically don't monitor private message conversations."
This tactic is just one of a growing number that are popping up on the message board, which has received heavier media scrutiny since last month's high-profile photo leaks. In another thread, one user praised /stol for the site's ingenuity, following iCloud security patches, which have made it harder for iCloud rippers to force their way into accounts.
"This is why I love /stol because y'all guys always have something brewing in the mix. This fake model scamming gonna be the next best thing to iCloud ripping. Cant wait to fap to the next nude female celebrity or women y'all get to fall for this. Keep up the great work guys!" the post reads.
While online security is always incumbent on the users themselves, /stol's choice to target Whisper is also an important reminder that, as media attention on the celebrity hacks fades due to an increased frequency of photo leaks, communities like anon-ib, and especially /stol are focusing their efforts away from celebrities and toward average women.
Disclosure: BuzzFeed is currently engaged in a content partnership deal with Whisper.
Charlie Warzel is a senior writer for BuzzFeed News and is based in New York. Warzel reports on and writes about the intersection of tech and culture.
Contact Charlie Warzel at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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