Established promises to connect beautiful young women with rich sugar daddies "to fulfill their lifestyle needs." The hackers didn't target Cougar Life, a sister site run by ALM that promises to connect older women with younger men."Avid Life Media has been instructed to take Ashley Madison and Established Men offline permanently in all forms, or we will release all customer records, including profiles with all the customers’ secret sexual fantasies and matching credit card transactions, real names and addresses, and employee documents and emails," the hackers wrote in a statement following the breach.
To show they meant business, they posted sample files containing some of the stolen data, which included company financial information detailing employee salaries and documents mapping the company's internal network.
Ashley claimed to have nearly 40 million users at the time of the breach about a month ago, all apparently in the market for clandestine hookups."Ashley Madison is the most famous name in infidelity and married dating," the site asserts on its homepage. Thousands of cheating wives and cheating husbands signup everyday looking for an affair....
With Our affair guarantee package we guarantee you will find the perfect affair partner."The data released by the hackers includes names, passwords, addresses and phone numbers submitted by users of the site, though it's unclear how many members provided legitimate details to open accounts.
A sampling of the leaked data indicates that users provided random numbers and addresses to open accounts.
But files containing credit card transactions likely yield real names and addresses, unless members of the site used anonymous pre-paid cards, which offer more anonymity.
Regardless of the reason, there's one thing that's certain: infidelity is devastating. "In many cases, it forces issues to the surface of a relationship that would have never otherwise been dealt with," says Kevin Hansen, author of RELATED: 10 Surprising Traits Men Who Cheat Have in Common "From the day I married my husband, I knew it was a mistake," says 50-year-old Elizabeth Smith.* "He was abusive, controlling and expected me to quit my job to make a home for him." A little over a year into the marriage, she began having an affair with a man that she worked with.
The data also includes descriptions of what members were seeking."The affair helped me find myself and proved to me that I could live a life independent of my husband. Twenty-five years later, I'm married to a wonderful man.We love making each other happy, and never try to change who the other person is," she says.For men, it's typically about the sex—the more sexually excitable they are, the more likely they are to cheat.For women, it's more about the level of satisfaction in her relationship; if a woman is unhappy in her marriage, she's 2.6 times more likely to cheat.