No, The Celebrities Who Had Private Photos Hacked & Published Did Not ‘Deserve’ It

We live in a strange society sometimes. People often find some strange pleasure when celebrities are on the wrong end of some kind of event – particularly one that embarrasses them. I’m not sure if it gives some people a sense of self importance or what but I always find people are quick to point fingers and being lecturing the celebrities from afar like a parent of a 3 year old.

As you probably know by now, a hacker from 4chan was able to get into cloud storage accounts of some celebrities and post images obviously not meant for public consumption. Many of these photos were of these celebrities (such as Kate Upton, Jennifer Lawrence and Tigers pitcher Justin Verlander to name a few) in various states of undress.

From the moment this broke up until even today, I saw across social media – on Facebook and Twitter in particular – many people saying different variations of the same thing. “Oh, here’s a surefire way of naked photos of you not showing up online – don’t put naked photos of yourself in the cloud!” This morning, Martha Maccallum of Fox News tweeted the following:

If you post naked pix on the cloud – you should not expect privacy~!

— martha maccallum (@marthamaccallum) September 2, 2014


Is that so? Well lets take a look at what Apple says about their iCloud service:



Apple seems to promise that customers data is going to be secure. That would include images.

How many of us have images on our phones or stored using Apple’s iCloud service we don’t want seen by the general public? It doesn’t have to be naked selfies or anything that extreme. It could merely be moments with a friend/loved one or something really funny and goofy.

But it’s still private. 

Cloud services (not just Apple’s) are sold to the public as “safe and secure” places to store our information. As consumers, we put trust in these companies to keep that information… and secure. A breach of that security is not our “fault” and taking to social media to admonish people for having private photos published by telling them they deserve it or that they shouldn’t expect privacy is rather silly.

Many comments I’ve seen (Similar to that of Martha’s tweet) have started off, “You shouldn’t expect…..”

Well, why shouldn’t people have expectations? When a service of some kind is provided, we have expectations. If we order a steak medium rare, we expect it is not going to be served to us well done. If see a train scheduled to arrive at 8:00am, we expect that is what time it will arrive. If we order something and UPS says the scheduled delivery is for Tuesday, we expect it will arrive there on Tuesday.

By the same token, if we’re told that some kind of Internet service is “secure”, we expect that to happen.

About 10 years ago, I was the victim of identity theft. The magnetic strip on my bank card got to a point where it could not be read. So I discarded it and ordered a new card. Bank policy (as part of their effort to be “secure”) says that one customer cannot have two active cards in their system. By a matter of default, the card I cut up should have immediately been deactivated but it was not. I still think to this day somebody at the bank saw this because it just seemed too convenient that card number would be used to rack up purchases online. Once the bank discovered what had happened, they rectified the error.

One could easily have said, “Well if you didn’t mess up your card the way you did, you wouldn’t have to get a new one!”

Doesn’t that sound ridiculous?

There are “celebrities” such as Kim Kardashian and Paris Hilton who have purposely had videos and photos of themselves “leaked” as nothing more than a way of building up their “celebrity” status. That certainly doesn’t seem to be the case here. These people had their privacy invaded and images they thought were “safe and secure” are now all over the Internet for anybody to see.

It is not something they expected and it is certainly not something they deserved.