Stay safe on OnlyFans: The naked truth
How content creators and customers can embrace social media platforms without (over) exposing themselves to potentially toxic NSFW content and privacy threats
By now you’ve probably heard of, or maybe even used, OnlyFans. Launched in 2016, this subscription service for content creators has gained momentum during the pandemic and now boasts a user base of over 170 million people2.1 million of them are registered creators.
While the site offers a home for all types of content, much of it relates to NSFW material. When it comes to online privacy and security, this alone raises the stakes significantly – as revealed, for example, by the still-in-the-life hack of adultery website Ashley Madison in 2015. haunted many victims years later.
Indeed, remember that in the absence of proper precautions, adult entertainment and online privacy do not make good ‘roommates’. Threats stemming from their potentially toxic ‘relationship’ run the gamut from relatively mundane content piracy to revenge porn and large-scale data leaks and breaches.
Naturally, OnlyFans and its users are not exempt from this risk. Many content producers have stated concerns over leaked content, hacked accountThat uploading revenge pornand even theft of content downloaded by past paying subscribers redistributed – often at a cost – active social media and other messaging platforms.
Needless to say, if content creators are at risk, customers are at risk too. As a corollary, ensuring the safety and privacy of those working in this industry – and its fans – requires utmost care and attention. That is why it is so important for users to be careful when sharing personal information online, and to be careful of stalkers, scammers and other ill-intentioned individuals.
What to watch out for
Each OnlyFans creator offers their own subscription plan in exchange for letting users access their exclusive content. Some even allow users to subscribe for free. But there’s a catch: Whether you sign up for a paid plan or for free, the site asks you to sign up and enter your payment card. At this point, the hardest part of the registration process is over.
Note that OnlyFans has no app — not on Android or on iOS. It can only be accessed via a web browser, such as Chrome or Safari.
While most pages have a monthly fee, free OnlyFans pages can amass a large audience, and content creators can still make a lot of money by adding special one-time pay-per-view content that many users are willing to pay for.
- the creators of OnlyFans need to provide personal information to create an account, including legal name and bank account details. You must also provide verification documents, such as a photo of a government-issued ID and a selfie with the same ID. These steps are necessary for tax purposes and to ensure that content creators are legally paid. It is important to note that OnlyFans knows the identities of all creators on the platform.
- OnlyFans customer need to provide an email address – and, regardless of whether they want to subscribe to a paid or free account, not adding a payment card is not an option.
Also, to carry out the verification process, creators must provide a handle to their social media profile and may be asked to make public posts regarding their new account. Fans may also be asked to provide additional personal details, depending on where they are located.
So how can you keep yourself safe on OnlyFans?
OnlyFans creators must provide their banking details, name and real ID – not only for the verification process, but also to get paid. So you can’t be completely anonymous – but you can try to maintain anonymity in your profile by using secondary social media accounts that aren’t linked to any of your close contacts. You can also choose to hide your face and avoid showing your location on sites.
We also recommend using a burner email address to manage your account in case of a personal data breach on OnlyFans. Likewise, so can you use a single use payment card for online use.
Please be aware, however, that malicious attackers can try to hack your OnlyFans account through clever social engineering or even cyberbullying techniques, causing users to simply hand over passwords and other login data. It is therefore important that you remain cautious about responding to unsolicited communications with personal information.
If a bad actor is able to gain unauthorized access to a creator’s account, he or she can potentially engage in a number of malicious activities, such as:
- View subscription-based content that has been posted by the account owner
- Changed the account owner’s password and locked them out of their own account
- Post new content to the account
- Remove content from account
- Change account settings
- Added new banking details to withdraw funds
- View the account owner’s personal information (such as their name, email address, and payment information)
- Using the account to send fraudulent messages to other OnlyFans users
Content creators and subscribers
Regardless of whether you’re a content creator or a subscriber, there are some simple but effective steps you can take to keep your account safe and stay out of harm’s way. Most importantly, you must:
Two-factor authentication is an extra layer of security designed to protect online accounts from unauthorized access and is offered to all OnlyFans accounts. The code sent to the phone or generated by the authentication application must be entered in addition to the account password before access to the account is granted. This makes it more difficult for an attacker to gain access to the account, even if they have the password.
However, if you forget your password, the way to recover it is to request the code to your email. So an attacker who has access to your email account can access the email created for password recovery and then take over your OnlyFans account.
Also, it’s important to note that while OnlyFans prevents account pictures from being stolen from Android devices (that is, by not allowing screenshots on those devices), this is unfortunately not the case on Apple’s iOS, which still allows for screenshots – as featured in this blogpost.
Report suspicious activity
There is always a risk of stalking, sextortion, and doxing when sharing personal information online, and the risk is especially high when using a platform like OnlyFans. Both creators and fans should do their part by reporting any unwanted activity or suspicious events (for example, a third party requesting a password recovery link, or engaging in any kind of bullying). Sites like PimEyes that use powerful facial recognition software make it easy for stalkers to find out information about the content creator, so it is very important that you only show your face if you know the risks.
OnlyFans allows you to Block or Limit a profile. While blocking will completely stop certain profiles from viewing your profile, restricting will only stop that profile from sending private messages or replying to posts.
Finally, if you see harmful content or suspect certain videos or photos have been stolen or posted without the consent of one or more of the people involved, you can also report profile.
Is OnlyFans safe?
The fact that so many people use OnlyFans to monetize their great content raises the stakes significantly – and not just for content creators. Therefore, it is important to know what you may be getting into and how to protect yourself from the privacy and security risks it may pose. Indeed, and like many other social media platforms and online services, the key to staying safe is being aware of threats, managing the security and privacy settings on your account, and applying basic cyber hygiene to minimize risk.