A cyber criminal who stoled nude photos of Jennifer Lawrence, Kate Upton and several other A-list celebrities has agreed to plead guilty to the charge of stealing the images using phishing attacks.

The accused, Ryan Collins is the first person to plead guilty in the investigation into the alleged hacking of numerous Apple and Google accounts owned by celebrities. Collins could face a prison sentence of up to five years for his actions.

The hack, which was widely known as “The Fappening”, saw hundreds of private photos of female celebrities being placed online for those with questionable morals to gawk at.

At the time of the leak it was thought there was a vulnerability in the iCloud service which allowed hackers to gain access to private information, however Collins has said that he used phishing tactics to gain access to the accounts.

Masquerading as Apple and Google, Collins sent emails to the victims who unknowingly provided their information to Collins. Once the victims had unknowingly provided their details, Collins was able to access the files these victims thought were stored securely online.

However, there seems to be no evidence linking Collins to the actual leak of the images, and the investigation to bring those who posted the images to book as well as those who stole other images, is still on going.

Assistant Director in charge of the Los Angeles FBI Field Office, David Bowdich has re-iterated to internet users, celebrities and ordinary folk alike, to be skeptical of emails asking for personal information.

We urge our readers to be vigilant at all times, a bit of paranoia about that email from your “bank” can save you a headache in the future.

[Via – The Guardian] [Image – ND BY/2.0 Bankenverband – Bundesverband deutscher Banken]