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Some thoughts about the Ashley Madison hack

As many of you will be aware, the Ashley Madison website that was supposed to be used to "cheat on your spouse" was hacked some time ago and the hackers threatened to release the data they stole.

There are a few points I think people should keep in mind:-

1. There are a lot of websites out there claiming they have copies of the data, be careful, many of them may be traps to try and infect your computer with malware, spyware or viruses (yes even on Macs)

2. Similarly, some will just be opportunist, what better way to harvest thousands of real live email addresses and other details than to ask people to submit them to a search function. Suspicious spouses may be inadvertently handing over details of their loved ones to spammers.

3. Ashley Madison did not require you to verify your email address when you registered (they didn't send one of those "click to confirm" emails many sites do) which leaves the website open for people to create fake accounts, or worse, fake accounts in real peoples names. (jilted ex's, malicious enemies or pranksters could have set up accounts in other peoples names for revenge or bullying)

4. It seems people are offering to remove you from the database for a small fee (payable by bitcoin) Even if this were a genuine offer the data has been copied so many times the deal is pointless. It's almost certainly just a scam.

5. More worryingly, people on the leaked database are being contacted with threats of blackmail. If you are contacted like this please contact your local police immediately, being in the database is not illegal, but blackmail most certainly is.

I realise peoples desire to see if someone they know was on the site might be very tempting to some, but by doing so you could leave yourself open to attack, hand over personal details unwittingly to spammers or indeed, falsely accuse someone whose details were used to create a fake account.

Posted by Peter on Mon 24th Aug 2015 21:22:41
Read 2346 Times
Last Modified on Mon 24th Aug 2015 22:10:27

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