Pictures of the actress that appeared on Reddit and 4chan were stolen, her publicist says.
Dozens of private images of Emma Watson have appeared online, and the actress is going on the legal offensive.
Images began circulating on Web forums Reddit and 4chan late Tuesday that allegedly showed the “Beauty and the Beast” star in various stages of undress. A spokesman for the “Beauty and the Beast” star confirmed to the Telegraph the theft of the images but denied the suggestion that any sexually explicit photos were part of the haul.
“Photos from a clothes fitting Emma had with a stylist a couple of years ago have been stolen,” her publicist told the the Telegraph. “They are not nude photographs. Lawyers have been instructed and we are not commenting further.”
The incident is reminiscent of a 2014 security breach in which a hacker got into actresses’ online storage accounts and grabbed their nude photos. In a scandal dubbed “The Fappening” (a combination of internet slang for masturbation and happening), Ryan Collins used a phishing scheme that gave him illegal access to more than 100 Apple iCloud and Gmail accounts, including ones belonging to Jennifer Lawrence, Kirsten Dunst, Kaley Cuoco and Kate Upton, among others.
Those photos were also spread widely on Reddit and 4chan. One year ago today, Collins agreed to plead guilty to federal charges related to the 2014 hack.