It was a phone call that scared every parent. Charlotte Law heard her daughter’s voice tremble at the end of the line. And it took only four words to send a run to her mind: ‘Mom, something terrible happened.’
Kayla was in the hospital? Was there an accident?
The truth was very frightening – as well as incomprehensible.
Graphic, topless photos of 24-year-old Kayla were stolen from her computer by an unknown hacker and posted on a large website for the world to see.
The photos were taken by Kayla in front of her bedroom mirror and were not intended to be shared publicly. They were safely stored – or as Kayla thought – on her laptop.
But what felt like an outrageous attack, as well as an attack on her privacy, was that images were remotely accessed by a stranger and uploaded to a website with more than 350,000 followers.
For Charlotte, it started a two-year battle to bring the person responsible to justice.
Charlotte Law who fought to bring Hunter Moore to justice for posting a picture of her daughter on a porn site without permission. Photo: Charlotte with daughter Kayla
She went into ‘full mom meltdown mode’ and followed the electronic trail to expose the person who tortured her daughter, tracked her to the place where she worked as a DJ, closed legal letters and abused the FBI until they used her 12 inches. A thick file of evidence to put him in jail.
Kayla, she learned, was away from her lonely prey. Although her website started with stolen photos, it soon became the center of so-called ‘revenge porn’ – a place where people, usually men, could share sexually explicit videos or photos of their partner or ex-girlfriend without their consent. Insult, shame or embarrass them.
Charlotte’s extraordinary crusade for justice has dubbed her ‘Erin Brockovich of Revenge Porn’ after the small town legal clerk (played by Julia Roberts in the 2000 Oscar-winning film) who single-handedly blamed a giant corporation. Poisoning water in a rural American city.
Charlotte’s story has also been turned into the Netflix series, The Most Hate Man on the Internet. The three-part drama from the British production team behind The Tinder Swindler, known as the must-see show of the summer, raises uncomfortable questions about security in the digital age.
Charlotte, 62, who is married to an English barrister and lives in a Los Angeles suburb, says: ‘My mother does what I didn’t do. I protected my child. Young people, mostly girls, are committing suicide for revenge porn. ‘
Graphic, topless photos of 24-year-old Kayla were stolen from her computer by an unknown hacker and posted for 350,000 viewers: Kayla with mother Charlotte Law
The number of victims of revenge porn in the UK has doubled in recent years, with the number of lockdowns rising. In April, a London coroner’s court heard how a 21-year-old business student drowned 80 feet of her death a week after her boyfriend sent a video of her having sex with a friend.
Charlotte says: ‘I hope this series sheds light on how revenge destroys lives. I also hope that you can fight like me. ‘
A one-time Hollywood starlet who dated singer Tom Jones for three years, Charlotte was working as an investigator for an insurance company when her family’s world turned upside down in 2012.
Charlotte says, ‘Kayla was photographed in the privacy of her bedroom because she was trying to get into acting and she wanted some sexy shots,’ says Charlotte. ‘She was practicing pose. She uploaded them to her computer and didn’t think about it anymore.
‘A few weeks later a friend saw topless pictures on a sour website. Kayla felt humiliated, embarrassed, and thought her life was over. ‘
Police have not shown interest. At that time, there was no law against sharing such pictures. So Charlotte became a spy.
Charlotte’s extraordinary crusade for justice has earned her the nickname ‘Erin Brockovich of Revenge Porn’. Pictured: Charlotte Law who fought to bring Hunter Moore down
The photos, discovered by a search, were posted on IsAnyoneUp.com, which showed someone hiding behind nicknames on social media, including their cat’s name.
The founder claimed that he started the site by ‘pure coincidence’ after posting an abusive photo of a woman on a sleeping website – only to find out 14,000 people clicked on it. He realized that he had stumbled upon a business opportunity.
But while the man was anonymous, he had the public names of the women he lost, and their addresses listed. Some of the photos were sent by the ex-husband and boyfriend, and at least two women were fired from their jobs after the photos appeared. One also lost custody of his children.
The man boasted of being a ‘professional life-destroyer’ online and compared himself to Charles Manson, the notorious cult leader and the brainwashing serial killer of his followers.
The website founder’s courage was such that it didn’t take long for Charlotte to find her real name – Hunter Moore, 36, who set up the website from the basement of her parents’ home in Woodland, California, 400 miles away. From LA.
Charlotte says: ‘He was boasting on the internet. This sledgehammer was sitting in the basement of his parents, he could work with a computer hacker to steal pictures of innocent girls and make money. ‘
Charlotte believes Kayla’s photos may have been used because she had a Facebook friend with another girl whose close photos were posted on the site.
Once she had Moore’s name, she found the phone number and dialed the address. But the person who answered repeatedly hung up the phone.
Discouraged, Charlotte and her barrister husband sent Moore a series of “pause and restraint” letters. But they only seemed to encourage him.
She remembers, ‘She laughed when she saw us. “He replied to a legal letter with a picture of his gender.”
‘Anonymous Hack’ was Hunter Moore, 36, who set up a website from the basement of his parents’ home in Woodland, LA Pictured: Hunter Moore in The Most Hated Man in the Internet.
As Moore attracted more attention, his notoriety grew. He had 600,000 Twitter followers, and claimed that his website had 350,000 members with 30 million page views a month, earning him a salary equivalent to 360,000.
‘He became a celebrity and hosted parties where he worked as a DJ. So I disguised myself to serve him papers, ‘says Charlotte.
‘I tried to find someone to run my case. But no one was there. I went online, made it public who this guy is and what he did to my family.
Meanwhile, Slimball was portrayed as a protagonist in a magazine interview.
‘Initially, Kayla and my husband urged me not to get involved. He said he was dangerous and I could not win. But I was determined to bring him down. ‘
This made Moore a little different, and events took a frightening turn when Charlotte began receiving death threats while Kayla was called a ‘slot’ for her mother to take pictures like ‘look by today’s Kardashian standards’.
But gradually, Charlotte began to be approached by other victims. “I started adding to the evidence collection and the file was 12 inches thick,” she says. After celebrities like Scarlett Johansson and Jennifer Lawrence fell prey to hackers who allegedly ‘stole’ pictures from their phones and the FBI was involved, Charlotte saw her opportunity.
She says that even though the FBI tried to stop her, she told them: ‘So you take action if it’s Scarlett Johansson but not if it’s a normal girl like my daughter?’ She says it kept her in touch with a spy, and it took two years for the FBI to start an investigation. All the while, other women were suffering. While she waited to gather evidence in her daughter’s case, Charlotte helped more than 500 others who had fallen victim to hackers or ex-boyfriends. Two young women, without contact with Moore’s case, committed suicide.
Charlotte says a woman was dismembered because pictures of her breasts were stolen from her doctor’s office. ‘Every woman and girl I speak to is traumatized.
“It should be classified as a sexual offense. The women I raped said that making revenge porn public was worse than sexual harassment. With the attack they could choose not to talk about it. They may try to forget it for a while. But with Revenge Porn, it’s out there forever.
‘I will remove the pictures of Kayla one day but they will pop up on another site. It’s about hating women, hurting women. ‘
In 2014, the FBI finally had enough to accuse Moore of aiding and abetting increasing identity theft and unauthorized access to computers. They shut down her website, raided her parents’ home and seized her computers.
Hunter Moore, 36, boasted of being a ‘ruin of business life’ online and compared himself to Charles Manson because he has 600,000 Twitter followers, claiming that his website has 350,000 members with 30 million monthly page views, earning him बराबर 360,000. Earns.
He pleaded guilty and was sentenced to two and a half years in prison. He was released in 2017 and is believed to have returned to his parents’ home.
A co-conspirator was also jailed for hacking Kayla’s computer.
The Minister of State repeatedly tried to contact Moore, but he could not respond. He has also refused to cooperate with the filmmakers.
Kayla, now 34, is a successful estate agent today who is getting married next week. She is eager to stay away from the limelight and – while fully supporting it – has chosen to play only a minimal role in the film.
‘She thinks it hurts her career,’ says her mother. “There’s still a stigma attached to it, as if it’s the woman’s fault, even if she’s a victim.”
While her case has helped enforce anti-revenge porn laws in California, she says the law does not allow online sex-related abuses in the UK and elsewhere.
Many other painful examples are on the rise, including ‘Jaisasusya’, which threatens to expose sexual images online.
She says, ‘I still get in touch with women every day and I hope that number will increase when the Netflix show airs. “I am not only a mother to protect my daughter, but I will make it my mission to protect someone’s daughter.”
The most hated person on the internet will stream on Netflix from July 27.