Most everything you need to know about the Ashley Madison Hack

The Ashley Madison hack has been in the news since last month, but with the release of user database which ended up on websites that had html zipcode database query functions along with dumps on sites like Pastebin, Ashley Madison user information has leaked out in a big way.

The following links will get everyone up to speed on the hack and its ramifications for Avid Life Media customers.

The Ashley Madison data dump explained ~ Daniel Victor

Who released the information, and why?

A group of hackers calling themselves Impact Team posted a small portion of the data in July, and they threatened to release the rest unless the site was shut down.

The hackers said they were upset about Ashley Madison’s policy for deleting user data when requested. The company has long offered members the ability to scrub their profiles and information from the site for $19, a feature that BuzzFeed News said generated nearly $2 million in 2014. But, as the breach showed, the data remained.

“We have explained the fraud, deceit, and stupidity of A.L.M. and their members,” Impact Team wrote, referring to Avid Life Media. “Now everyone gets to see their data.”

How could I check who had an account?

A reminder: The information found in the data has not been verified.

But two different search tools have surfaced that claim to show whether an email address was used.

More than 15,000 email addresses in the breach were hosted on United States government and military servers, The Hill reported.

So with that set up there is a rumor spreading like wildfire that the next data dump will feature nude selfies and the like. The bad news is the Impact Team evidently has the user photos and private chat transcripts. The group indicated it would not dump “dick pictures” on the internet but they also did not rule out leaking private chats and other images posted through the ‘cheaters’ site.

Here is an interview with the Impact Team hackers that appeared in Vice. Here are a few snippets:

What other data from Avid Life Media do you have?

300GB of employee emails and docs from internal network. Tens of thousands of Ashley Madison user pictures. Some Ashley Madison user chats and messages. 1/3 of pictures are dick pictures and we won’t dump. Not dumping most employee emails either. Maybe other executives.

What do you think about Avid Life Media’s (and CEO Noel Biderman’s) reaction?

They make $100,000,000 in fraud a year. Not very surprised they didn’t shut down. Maybe lawyers can shut them down now. They sound like politicians, cannot stop lying. They said they don’t store CC [credit card information]. Sure, they don’t store email either, they just log in every day to server and read. They had password to CC processor. We dumped from CC processor.

What were your motivations for the hack?

We were in Avid Life Media a long time to understand and get everything. Finally we watched Ashley Madison signups growing and human trafficking on the sites. Everyone is saying 37 million! Blackmail users! We didn’t blackmail users. Avid Life Media blackmailed them. But any hacking team could have. We did it to stop the next 60 million. Avid Life Media is like a drug dealer abusing addicts.

Is evidence that ‘Full Delete’ does not work included in the dumps?

Yes. Many accounts and identities in there.

3 thoughts on “Most everything you need to know about the Ashley Madison Hack”

  1. Doug, our politicians in this State are far too saavy and educated in cunning, crookedness, coercion, blackmail, money grubbing, etc. than to be caught in something like this, don’t you think??? This bunch is much farther ahead of the game (or should be) than to fall for something like this – at least without using a false name and/or e-mail address. Sure hate it for the families involved, but no one is to blame for it all but the user, who knows better – you reap what you sow.

  2. Doug, I have been getting a pop-up when trying to post here. It tries to get you to reset some information so that you can post. Just wanted to give you a heads up.
    I backed up to my original post several times before I was able to post this message. Gotta get back to work for now. See below:

    ERROR 500 – INTERNAL SERVER ERROR = Website Hosting
    Why am I seeing this page?
    Is there anything that I can do?
    Understanding Filesystem Permissions
    How to modify your .htaccess file
    How to modify file and directory permissions
    This site is hosted by HostGator!

    Want to customize this page?

  3. Charlene, Slabbed has gotten a month’s worth of site traffic (a good month) in the past 36 hours and the pace has picked up even more today. The website is buckling under the weight of the traffic.

Comments are closed.