Platforms for finding sex online have been as long as the internet. The vast majority of users, based on the gender disparity research, almost certainly never met someone with whom they had an affair. But the data has since spread to more accessible parts of the Web, threatening to upend relationships as the site’s parent company struggles to manage the fallout. Married and committed men and their profiles, which were designed to lure strange women into sexual escapades, were exposed for the world to see. There are various things identity protection services can do to help defend against risks such as identify theft (i.e. monitor credit enquiries), but they cannot remove your data from the web”.

Of course, his wife and kids are suffering and that is not worthy of celebration, but Duggar’s comeuppance totally is. But let’s not forget that millions of Americans are currently being exposed due to the Ashley Madison data dump, and someone was brave enough to comb through the data to find out which states spent the most on AM accounts. That thread also demonstrates that whilst this is never something that should be used against someone seeking employment, the reality is that it will become one more data attribute in the increasingly rich profiles that are built up about individuals.

The Impact Team threatened to expose the personal information of Ashley Madison users unless ALM shut down Ashley Madison and another of its websites, Established Men. In a closer look, it’s a dating site with a quite poor functional of search and lots of empty profiles. Three years later, Buell says Ashley Madison has a bigger target on its back — not because of the 2015 data breach but because of the size of the Ashley Madison brand. The company is also armed with an audit from accounting firm Ernst & Young , which verified 5,673,024 real accounts were registered in 2017 and that the ratio of active paid users male to female was 1 to 1.13. While Ashley Madison was once outed for conning users with female bots, via a probe by the Federal Trade Commission, its comeback includes a “no bots” promise.

Avid Life Media, the company that runs the website, has confirmed to CNNMoney that these tactics were employed by Ashley Madison until recently. Of course they could always search on another service which didn’t require verification that they could access the email account, but certainly HIBP wasn’t going to be able to help them out. It is near impossible to identify how an account was created with someone else’s email address. I’m not doing specific searches for individuals’ data nor am I accepting payment in return for the services I’m providing (discretionary donations aside which have been on HIBP for the last 18 months ).