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Ashley Madison hacked, personal information leaked

Mr. Ambien

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This has quite the entertainment potential.. especially with naming and shaming.


Ashley Madison hacked, users threatened with exposure

Ashley Madison, a controversial online social network that gears itself towards married people seeking to have affairs, has been hacked, and the company that owns it is being threatened with exposure of users' personal information.

Hackers have threatened to reveal customers' sexual fantasies and financial information if the website is not shut down, according to the Krebs on Security, an online cyber-security information site.

CBS News business analyst Jill Schlesinger said in an appearance on "CBS This Morning" that 37 million people use AshleyMadison.com. The site is owned by Avid Life Media, which has confirmed the hack.

Use of the site is largely free, but there are several features (such as chatting) that cost extra. For example, registered users may elect to pay an extra $19 fee to get their data scrubbed.

The company has collected millions offering the service, but the hackers are claiming that this scrubbing is not occurring. Schlesinger reports the hackers want the website shut down.

The hackers appear to be engaging in blackmail, but their exact reasoning is unknown.

"I think the motivation for the hackers is to embarrass the company," Schlesinger said. "Is this somebody who is a disgruntled spouse of someone using the site? It does seem very specific to the company. They call out the Chief Technology Officer, saying it's not your fault.

"The company believes it's somebody who was either a contractor, maybe a former employee, who wants to embarrass the company."

In a statement, the company apologized for what it called an "unprovoked and criminal intrusion into our customers' information." It said it had launched an investigation involving leading computer security experts and was working with law enforcement.

"We have always had the confidentiality of our customers' information foremost in our minds, and have had stringent security measures in place, including working with leading IT vendors from around the world. As other companies have experienced, these security measures have unfortunately not prevented this attack to our system," the company said.

Earlier this spring, the company was talking about going public. One concern raised was that, if you're going to go public, you've got to show the investment community that you can protect data.

"I think this pushes those plans back quite some time," Schlesinger said.

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Ashley Madison says 1 in 5 Ottawans subscribed to adulterer website

But questions raised over reliability of data
One in five Ottawa residents allegedly subscribed to adulterers' website Ashley Madison, making one of the world's coldest capitals among the hottest for extra-marital hookups — and the most vulnerable to a breach of privacy after hackers targeted the site.
According to previously published figures from the Toronto-based company, some 189,810 Ashley Madison users were registered in Ottawa, a city with a population of about 883,000, making the capital No. 1 for philanderers in Canada and potentially the highest globally per capita,
To be sure, the subscription data may not be that reliable.
A former employee sued Avid Life, saying she had developed debilitating wrist pain, insomnia and anxiety while writing 1,000 fake profiles for a Brazilian version of Ashley Madison, according to court records. The case was dismissed earlier this year.
Hackers threatened to leak details including the credit card information, nude photos, sexual fantasies and real names of as many as 37 million customers worldwide of Ashley Madison, which uses the slogan: "Life is short. Have an affair."
The website's Canadian parent, Avid Life Media, said it had since secured the site and was working with law enforcement agencies to trace those behind the attack.
"Everybody says Ottawa is a sleepy town and here we are with 200,000 people running around on each other," said municipal employee Jon Weaks, 27, as he took a break at an outdoor cafe near the nation's Parliament.
"I think a lot of people will be questioned tonight at dinner," added colleague Ali Cross, 28.
Hack an inside job
The one bright spot for millions of Ashley Madison's nervous clients is that the hack appears to be an inside job, according to police and intelligence sources. Avid Life has also said it is convinced the hackers were formerly connected to the company.
That means, for now at least, the perpetrators are driven by ideological and not commercial motives.
The hackers, who referred to customers as "cheating dirtbags who deserve no discretion," appear uninterested in blackmailing individual clients, unlike an organized crime outfit.
"If it had been organized, they wouldn't have advertised it," said a law enforcement source who spoke on condition of anonymity. "But there's going to be a lot of people with lots of explaining to do."
The hotbed of infidelity was also the seat of power: The top postal code for new members matched that of Parliament Hill, according to Avid Live chief executive Noel Biderman in a newspaper report published earlier this year.
Biderman said capital cities around the world typically top subscription rates, a phenomenon he chalks up to "power, fame and opportunity," along with the risk-taking personalities that find themselves in political cities.
The Ottawa mayor's office and city council either declined to comment or did not return emails.
The hackers want Avid Life to shut down the website, as well as a second one it runs, EstablishedMen.com which is widely described as a "sugar daddy site," but has no issues with CougarLife.com, a site for older women looking for hookups.
"In our buttoned-down city, it may not be acceptable to openly explore outside of a committed relationship," said Ottawa marriage counselor Nataxja Cini.
In a city full of professionals with demanding careers, many in government, Cini said marriage may come under more strain than usual. But with a stable family life still a badge of success, an Ashley Madison subscription may be preferable to divorce, she said.
Still, one Ottawa resident, who declined to give her last name, said it is unsurprising the small government town is home to so many Ashley Madison clients.
"In a blue collar city, they're not going to use a website, they're going to do it at a bar," said Kary, 38. In Ottawa "you can't run the risk of someone seeing you at a bar doing that."
The town is also not famed for its rollicking social scene.
"Why do you think everyone goes to Montreal to have a good time?" she added. "Ottawa is the city fun forgot."


What does this say about our government? :lol:

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Ottawa... Shame, shame.

1 in 5 chance our PM uses the site. I'd say probably higher.

Seems fairly obvious that the hacker(s) is a woman former employee who thought her husband would never, ever use the site. Likely, her employment there made him aware of the site. Whoops.

ps. lol Cougarlife.com Gotta check it out.

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Gross concept for a website, hopefully it gets shut down permanently.

You're suggesting a form of censorship? Right up our current nanny-states alley I suppose. This is a site for consenting adults to meet and share similar interests and hobbies? Should pinterest be shut down? Not following.

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You're suggesting a form of censorship? Right up our current nanny-states alley I suppose. This is a site for consenting adults to meet and share similar interests and hobbies? Should pinterest be shut down? Not following.

Personally, it sounds like a great life to be in a monogamous relationship and stress out over hiding banging someone on the side. I guess just leaving Person A for Person B is too tough.

But that's why I don't feel bad for the guys about to be named and shamed.

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