From lascivious stories about Josh Duggar’s membership to leaked credit cards details and a cynically handy search tool to see if a someone you know has or had a membership, a group of hackers called Impact Team has done irreparable damage to the site.
And if its email interview with Motherboard is any indication, it doesn’t feel too guilty about it.
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.
Impact Team shed further light on exactly how long the group had been tracking Ashley Madison and its parent company Avid Life Media, and how much data it really has.
It turns out that the hackers targeted the site “a long time ago,” and have roughly 300GB of information on the company.
The group also told Motherboard that there’s evidence indicating that Ashley Madison and ALM’s guarantee of a ‘full delete’ of accounts (which retailed on the site for $20) was a lie. Leaked documents indicate that service made ALM $1.7 million in 2014.
In addition to member data, the group also has internal data, company emails and “tens of thousands of Ashley Madison user pictures. Some Ashley Madison user chats and messages.”
While conducting the process of stealing the data, Impact Team noted that the security on Ashley Madison was not very stringent. “Nobody was watching. No security,” the hackers said. “You could use Pass1234 from the internet to VPN to root on all servers.”
The group also fired back about claims that the data dump is a facilitator for blackmail and extortion:
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.
For its part, Ashley Madison remains tight-lipped about confirming what information was pilfered from their networks. The company stated earlier this week that no full credit card numbers were stolen and that it does not store numbers.
Unfortunately, that doesn’t seem to have stopped Impact Team from finding them: According to the interview, the group ripped numbers from the credit card processor instead.
As the scandals continue to cascade from the released data – which remains just the tip of the iceberg at around 30GB – Ashley Madison will likely not recover.
The information is real and it is out there, and there’s little the company can do now other than hope to see members of Impact Team behind bars.
➤ Ashley Madison Hackers Speak Out: ‘Nobody Was Watching’ [Motherboard]