The hacked website Ashley Madison had users pay $20 to delete their profile, but actually kept names, addresses, and personal data. In July 2015, hackers broke into the site and threatened to post the data publicly.
UPDATE: Ashley Madison Lawsuits Centralized in Federal MDL
Dozens of people have filed lawsuits or joined class actions against the website AshleyMadison.com after a data breath. In December 2015, federal judges centralized the litigation in Multi-District Litigation (MDL No. 2669) in the Eastern District of Missouri under Judge John A. Ross. Click here to read more.
10 Gigs of Ashley Madison User Data Dumped on Dark Web
In August 2015, hackers dumped 9.7-gigabytes of data from 32 million Ashley Madison users on the dark web, including account information (log-in, name, address, and phone number), descriptions of what members were seeking, encrypted passwords, and credit card / payment transaction details for seven years dating back to 2007. No credit card numbers were released, but names, addresses, email addresses, and transaction amounts linked to those numbers were released. Click here to read more.
What is the problem?
The dating website Ashley Madison boasts 37 million users worldwide and encourages “discreet” extra-marital affairs. Anyone can sign up for free, but users are directed to pay $20 for the “Full Delete” to erase their profile, messages, photos, and other personal information.
Nothing online is truly private, but there are many things we don’t want the world to see — especially private information that can used for extortion.
In July 2015, hackers calling themselves “The Impact Team” claimed to have compromised user databases and threatened to post “secret sexual fantasies and matching credit card transactions, real names and addresses” of every user unless Ashley Madison was taken offline.
The hackers cited an article published on Ars Technica, which reported that Ashley Madison tricks users into thinking they need to pay to delete their profile — and then never actually deletes the data after taking users’ money.
Did Ashley Madison Lie About Deleting Your Profile?
Avid Life Media (ALM), the parent company of Ashley Madison, is highly-profitable and hoped to raise as much as $200 million in an IPO later this year. Instead, the company is in damage-control after being accused of lying about deleting personal data. According to the hackers:
“Full Delete netted ALM $1.7mm in revenue in 2014. It’s also a complete lie. Users almost always pay with credit card; their purchase details are not removed as promised, and include real name and address, which is of course the most important information the users want removed.”
ALM offered users a token gesture of apology by offering the “Full Delete” feature for free. However, it is too late for millions of people who had their data stolen.
Ashley Madison Hacking Lawsuits
Once private information goes online, there is nothing you can do to get it back. If you paid for the “Full Delete” and your information was stolen, you may be eligible to join a class action lawsuit against ALM for lying about deleting your data.
Our lawyers are concerned that thousands of users of Ashley Madison were victims of consumer fraud. If you decide to file a lawsuit, you and everyone else who was deceived by ALM could receive compensation for the loss of your privacy, and more.
This is not the first time ALM has been sued for “unjust enrichment.” In 2012, a Brazilian employee sued the company for $20 million after she was injured while typing up typing up 1,000 fake female profiles for the Portuguese version of the site. The company has also been accused of using misleading tactics to gain millions of users’ trust and provide personal data.