Celebrity lawyer tells clients to avoid using iCloud, smart devices

NEW YORK, Sept 2 Tue Sep 2, 2014 12:31pm EDT

NEW YORK, Sept 2 (Reuters) - A leading celebrity lawyer has advised his clients not to use smartphones and the iCloud after intimate photos of Oscar-winning actress Jennifer Lawrence and female entertainers and models were posted online following an apparent mass hacking.

Martin Garbus, a New York trial lawyer who over the years has represented actors Al Pacino, Sean Connery, Robert Redford and others, said on Tuesday worried clients have approached him about security issues.

"Nothing is safe on the Internet, period," he told Reuters. "Everything on your iPhone, whether it be phone calls, message texts, pictures, is all available."

Garbus said clients started to contact him after intimate photos of Lawrence, a star of "The Hunger Games" movie franchise and a best actress Academy Award winner for "Silver Linings Playbook," and other high-profile women began appearing on Sunday.

Personal photos of Sports Illustrated swimsuit model Kate Upton and American actress Mary Elizabeth Winstead were also posted on the image-sharing forum 4chan.

Apple Inc has said it is investigating the reports that its iCloud, which stores data online rather than on a user's device, had apparently been hacked.

Lawrence's representative described the release of the photos as a "flagrant violation of privacy" and said the authorities have been contacted.

A spokesman for the FBI said the agency is addressing the matter.

Garbus said he was not surprised by the hacking because he said he has seen it in the past.

"There are just so many different ways that one's privacy can be invaded," he added. (Reporting by Jeffrey Dastin; Writing by Patricia Reaney; Editing by Susan Heavey)