Hackers are blackmailing Ashley Madison users, after stealing users account details earlier this year. Now ransom letters have been threatening to send account details to users’ families.
Ashley Madison is the biggest social dating website that gives people who are married or in a relationship an opportunity to date again if they want. Ashley Madison’s strapline says everything about the site, “Life is short, have an affair”.
Hackers calling themselves “The Impact Team” released a 10GB file containing all the personal data of site users including emails and profiles. They are sending ransom letters through the regular mail, demanding thousands of dollars in order to keep users’ identities secret.
Graham Cluley said in his blog that hackers are only trying their luck to get their hands on a few thousand dollars, users should ignore such letters and report them to the concerned authorities.
The hacking had already caused a lot of trouble with two individuals committing suicide when the data was leaked. Josh Duggar, former director of the Family Research Council, resigned his post after he was caught with multiple accounts on the website.
Because most users on Ashley Madison are married or in a relationship, they fear letters demanding money landing on their doormats. If their data is leaked online, it could have repercussions for them should families and friends find out about their double lives.
The postal letter is the second phase of the blackmail, following on from emails sent to Ashley Madison members.