See me naked.
That’s not an offer. It’s the user name for the person that hacked my Instagram account.
So, it’s actually one word: seemenaked.
I suppose that could be read as 'see men aked', but I'm guessing not.
I had been on Instagram one whole week, my account set up by my 15- and 11-year old nieces who convinced me it was time to step up my social media game. As simple as Instagram is, I don’t think I’m smart enough to have figured it out on my own.
I took my first photo with Instagram and immediately got a few responses, a few followers. A very large part of the allure of social media is amassing followers.
Pretty cool, I thought. Very soon, millions would be seeing the world through my eyes.
Turns out, I wasn’t having much success. After a week on Instagram, I had fewer followers than Jesus had disciples.
That raises questions as to why anyone would want to hack my account.
Luckily, I was with my 19-year old cousin, Hannah, when my Instagram account started blowing up. Since the invention of the VCR, every adult has known when you have a problem involving tech, you need kids around to figure it out.
My screen started filling up with requests to follow me, some in languages I did not know. Almost immediately, the request to follow me was followed by them accepting a request for me to follow them. Except I never made any such requests.
I showed the screen to Hannah. “What’s going on?”
She grabbed my phone. “You’ve been hacked. Someone calling themselves ‘seemenaked.”
I tried to get my phone back, reminding her I had spent my entire career in radio. That automatically makes me a journalist. And if I’m a journalist, shouldn’t I investigate? I mean, if ‘seemenaked’ has hijacked my account, shouldn’t I at least check her out? Click on a few pictures to see if she's someone I know.
(I’m assuming it was a ‘she’ because the profile picture was a young woman’s smiling face. I do realize that means nothing on social media, but again… investigative journalist…. we investigate stuff….)
“No,” says Hannah, as her thumbs started hammering on my phone screen.
“What’s your password?” she asked.
She continued working. Working and mumbling.
“I need your password.”
Can’t help you.
“We may have to delete your account.”
Great. One and done on Instagram.
That evening, a text arrives from a former radio partner. The catty language of her text told me she was amused. She had received a solicitation to follow me on Instagram with an enticing photo attached.
Make that, partially enticing. It was a collage of photos that included one of me and my wife.
I’m scratching my head on this. If you receive such a photo that appears to have come from me, what are you supposed to think? That I’ve posted some ‘then and now’ photos of my wife? That the Kardashians spend time at our house? That we have a secret life we're finally letting you in on?
Hanna swung back into action. After another half-hour of working, she eventually handed the phone back to me, declaring my account free from the intruder.
So she thought.
The next day, I received a notice from Instagram telling me that my account was now associated with another email address. And the new email ends not with .com but with .ru.
Russia! So that’s it!
Not only had the Russians hacked my account, they had used Russian babes to do it. (See how this investigative journalist thing works?)
My profile picture had also been changed. No longer was it the face of a 60-something year old white guy, it was now a nicely-tanned, round booty in a thong. And since it was not a flat, almost non-existent booty, I knew it wasn't my mine.
Disgust set in. Replacing my face with a butt - even a really cute one - was taking things a little too far.
So, I’ve decided to take matters into my own hands. I’m heading to Russia to track down every one of these ne’er-do-wells. That’s right, I still have the picture of them on my phone (for investigative purposes only, of course), so I know what they look like.
And when I find them, boy, am I going to give them a good talking-to (possibly, over drinks).
I especially want to track down ‘seemenaked.’ I’m thinking I may just take off all my clothes and let her see me naked.
If that doesn’t convince her to change her hacker ways, nothing will.