AshleyMadison.com, the world’s largest extramarital affair dating website was hacked by a group of hackers back in July of this year. The hackers were able to copy a whopping 9.7 gigabytes of information, dumping it all on the DarkNet. Data from over 31 million accounts all around the world was posted online, leading to an exodus of marital issues and divorces.
Due to the site’s policy, personal user information was not deleted, even after accounts where closed. That might have been a huge mistake. Between 18 and 20 August, the group responsible leaked 25 gigabytes of users’ information including search history, credit card transaction records, real names and real home addresses. This website had many high-profile clients whose data have been made public.
Real Consequences for Ashley Madison
This already famous data breach has led to the resignation of most of the staff from Ashley Madison, including their CEO. Avid Life Media, the parent company of Ashley Madison, is on the brink of collapsing, having to deal with multiple lawsuits. Speaking bluntly, they were not able to protect their users’ information. This alone sends a clear message in the adult dating community – no one is safe anymore.
The Emotional Toll is Real
Many people have been affected by this cyber-attack, including officials and public persons. The emotional toll is too large to quantify. Even though not all the data has been stolen or posted online, all the people who have used or are using the platform feel extremely embarrassed. An anonymous user recently declared that this is a very embarrassing event, especially as both he and his wife were active members on the site.
We all know that people are incredibly judgmental, especially when it comes to extramarital affairs. Many people believe that these so called “cheaters” deserved to be exposed. However, we should not judge too hard those who were caught. Many other married people who are in the same boat choose to have an affair without using dating sites or extramarital affair sites. Instead of being judged, all of these people should be supported and helped to regain their lost credibility.
Corporate Hacks on the Rise
Ashley Madison is not the first extramarital affair site hacked by cyber criminals. Home Depot, AdultFriendFinder and Target were all hacked in the past 24 months. Less and less people feel secure on these websites. These hacks can be hell made real for users affected. While companies fear that they might lose millions of dollars or even go out of business, users are fearful that their data is exposed and their spouses and close friends will find out who they really are.
Help is on the Way
Trustify, the leading platform for private investigators and online detectives, recently took over this case and is eager to help users affected by the hack to regain their lives back. Trustify’s director and founder, Danny Boice, was sure that all the information stolen would be published on the Dark Web, which is accessible only through a Tor browser. He was right. All the information was posted between 18 and 20 August, 2015.
People affected by the hack can contact Trustify and hire a PI (private investigator), who can scour the dark net and the web to see if their private information is listed online. You can read more about how Trustify is trying to help those affected by the hack here: https://www.washingtonpost.com/lifestyle/style/was-your-spouse-on-ashley-madison-a-new-type-of-detective-is-ready-to-help/2015/07/24/a041f182-3231-11e5-97ae-30a30cca95d7_story.html.
Many Affairs Exposed
Amidst all the controversy related to the Ashley Madison hacks, people are coming to discover famous names of public persons and theologians whose names appear on the Darknet. Of course, the fun part can’t be neglected. Ashley Madison hacks prove that many users love to spend their time flirting with robot users. Read more about this fun fact here: http://bgr.com/2015/09/01/ashley-madison-hack-robot-users/.
Nevertheless, famous theologians and public speakers who claim to be Christians have been found “guilty” to be part of Ashley Madison. For instance, the well-famed Christian theologian R.C. Sproul, whose books have helped millions of people from all around the world, has been found among Ashley Madison’s clients. He recently declared at a press conference that he has only visited the website out of curiosity. Even though his wife has died, Sproul declared that he has remained faithful to her even after her passing.
The Ashley Madison hacks might be just the beginning. Stay protected when surfing online and remember that you are never safe. In fact, you might be safer in the real world than in the virtual one.