Hackers from The Impact Team took responsibility for breaching the servers of a website dedicated to cheaters called Ashley Madison resulting in the loss of source code, customer records, financial information and detailed personal fantasies of nearly 40 million members of the site.
The Impact Team released a statement demanding that Avid Media, the company behind AshleyMadison.com and EstablishedMen.com websites, shut down the service or risk having their confidential & personal customer data leaked onto the Internet. The hackers targeted AshleyMadison and EstablishedMen over the questionable morals they condoned and encouraged, but they also took issue with what they considered ALM’s fraudulent business practices.
Avid Media chose not to take down the sites and released a statement in response “This event is not an act of hacktivism, it is an act of criminality. It is an illegal action against the individual members of AshleyMadison.com, as well as any freethinking people who choose to engage in fully lawful online activities,” the company said in a statement. “The criminal, or criminals, involved in this act have appointed themselves as the moral judge, juror, and executioner, seeing fit to impose a personal notion of virtue on all of society. We will not sit idly by and allow these thieves to force their personal ideology on citizens around the world.” As a result almost 10 gigabytes of information has been leaked onto the web.
According to reports from various sources, there are over 15,000 emails associated with people from the Military and various parts of the US Government. What should be noted is that since Ashley Madison did not require email verification, it is quiet possible to have your email listed even if you actually never signed up.
The data has already been mined and put into a searchable database. It will be interesting to see what comes of this attack. Some are praising the Impact Team since they targeted a company that helps people cheat on their supposed loved ones. Others are stating that even if you disagree with the practices of Avid Media, hacking websites is still illegal.