Apple is investigating claims that iCloud was hacked, leading to the theft and posting of nude photos of several celebrities.
Initial media reports suggested that the hacks stemmed from individual accounts on iCloud, an online service to store photos, music and other data from Apple devices.
“We take user privacy very seriously and are actively investigating this report,” Apple spokeswoman Nat Kerris said in a statement.
Buzzfeed reported that photos of actress Jennifer Lawrence and model Kate Upton have been confirmed as authentic. Photos of singer Ariana Grande are fake, a spokesperson told Buzzfeed.
If vulnerabilities with iCloud are to blame, it could certainly do a lot of harm to Apple’s effort to get customers comfortable with storing in the cloud. But some doubt that Apple could’ve done much about it; James Cook writes on Business Insider that it’s “unlikely that someone has broken into Apple’s iCloud service,” but rather that the breach occurred the old-fashioned way—through using each celebrity’s email address and a guessed password.
The hack comes a week before a major Apple product event, which is rumored to involve the unveiling of a new iPhone and/or Apple’s first smart watch.