Husbands and wives looking to have a secret affair may want to go about hooking up the old-fashioned way (say, with someone from the office? The nanny? An ex-boyfriend who recently friended you on Facebook?) because your secret is not safe with several online dating sites, including Ashley Madison, which encourages married users to cheat. The personal information (meaning: names, financial information and sexual fantasies) of some of its users was posted online after the parent company Avid Life Media was hacked.
The person or people behind the attack have threatened to release all of the sites' personal information if the company doesn't take down its most controversial site, Ashely Madison, a matchmaker for cheaters (or people who like sleeping with married men and women).
The Toronto-based media company said the hackers' posts, which appeared on the site and contained user information, was taken down by a hired tech security firm. Law enforcement and the company are investigating the hack.
Two other sites, Cougar Life and Established Men, were also vulnerable in the hack, although lazy, cheating spouses who hooked up through Ashley Madison are probably feeling the most nervous.
The company says it's close to confirming the identities of the hackers, who they say are mad about the website's business model. Ashley Madison is free to sign up with, but the site charges users for full deletion of their information if they decide to quit the site. Users can permanently hide their profile for free, according to the Guardian, but company ads claim the full delete is the only way to really rid oneself of what for some are bad choices made late at night while guzzling a cheap pinot grigio.
The hackers argue that users pay with credit cards and that payment details are not removed upon "full delete." Those details include real names and addresses.