Marc Randazza is exposing a scam being run on a site called “Is Anybody Down”. Ken White at Popehat has gotten in on the fun too. The concept behind Anybody Down site is that angry exes submit nude pictures to the site (without the permission of the people in the pictures) and they are posted publicly to shame the subjects.
That’s bad enough, but the scam appears to go further. There is a site that appears to be related, called “The Takedown Lawyer.” For the low, low price of $250, an alleged attorney named David Blade III (supposedly a public defender in New York) can guarantee that your picture is removed from the Anybody Down site. (Note that since being exposed, the owner of the Takedown Lawyer site is now calling it “Takedown Hammer” and making no references to being an attorney.)
The two websites are so cozy, that Takedown Lawyer even advertises its services on the Anybody Down site. Huh? Yep, the very site that is exposing nude pictures of people without their consent is advertising that there is an “attorney” who can get those pictures off the site for a fee. Interestingly, that advertisement has been changed to remove references to lawyers, but is still guaranteeing that your nude pictures will be removed for a fee.
Just how cozy are the “Takedown Lawyer” and “Anybody Down?” Marc Randazza has published the whois information for the two sites, and as luck would have it, Takedown Lawyer and Anybody Down were both registered by one Craig Brittain. Who would have thunk????
Marc gave the scammer a chance to come clean in this hilarious email exchange. It appears that the person behind the Takedown Lawyer site isn’t a lawyer at all, but continues to say he’s a lawyer while removing all references to being a lawyer from his sites.
And then Marc received this email from Is Anybody Down.
It sounds to me like someone has something to hide.
Ken White corresponded with Craig Brittain, and received this information in one of the emails:
We’ve already been thoroughly investigated numerous times and found to be free of any wrongdoing whatsoever. You can think what you want to. Extortion would be if I threatened to release photos of people unless they paid me. I do not engage in extortion. I post photos I receive from submitters, meaning that I am not responsible for their submissions to begin with, and I am simply posting on behalf of the submitters who hold the entirety of the responsibility for their submissions. I reserve the right to remove content for any reason, or no reason at all.
David Blade operates to remove content on behalf of clients via mediated/mitigated takedown as an independent third party. I have zero desire to remove the content – ideally, posts would never be removed from my website. However, some people go to drastic measures when their pictures are posted. David Blade’s services are a safety measure – a provision for people who would hire lawyers or do more drastic things like crime or suicide. I make no profit from his legal services – he only pays me a flat, fixed fee for hosting and advertising on my website.
Yep, sounds totally legitimate to me.
UPDATE: It appears that Craig Brittain and “David Blade” may be one in the same. Shocking!