Former Miss Universe Catriona Gray on Tuesday asked authorities to find the source of a doctored photo that circulated on social media, testing cybersecurity laws at a time when misinformation finds a ready audience in millions under virus quarantine.
Gray said the photo from a Bench ad campaign was altered to make it appear that she was naked. It went viral days after her ex-boyfriend, model Clint Bondad, fired off cryptic posts on Instragram that appearently to alluded to her.
“Me and my team are taking the actions that we need to address the issue at hand,” Gray told reporters. Before she proceeded to the National Bureau of Investigation, the beauty queen and children’s advocate was named ambassador for traditional weavers.
The NBI deputy chief, Vicente de Guzman, assured Gray that those behind the photo would be caught. “The reason why the NBI will be conducting an investigation is to determine the persons accountable for this posting in the social media. Kahit sino tamaan niyan, icha-charge namin (We will charge whoever is found to be behind this),” he said.
Gray’s lawyer, Chris Limquigan, reminded the public that the photo was “fake and digitally altered.” He added: “We strongly denounce this vicious attempt to tarnish the good name of Ms. Gray at a time when fake news is prevalent. We urge the public to be discerning and critical of what they see and share on social media.”
Gray, of course, is not the first celebrity to seek the NBI’s help over internet crimes but authorities are especially watchful during the quarantine, when fake news can spread fast. The country’s pandemic response law even penalizes spreading of misinformation.