Skip To Content
JEWISH. INDEPENDENT. NONPROFIT.
Breaking News

Hackers Threaten to Expose Clients of Jewish-Owned Cheating Website Ashley Madison

Hackers claim to have personal details of more than 37 million cheating spouses on dating website Ashley Madison and have threatened to release nude photos and sexual fantasies of the site’s clients unless it is shut down, blog KrebsOnSecurity reported.

Ashley Madison’s Canadian parent, Avid Life Media, confirmed the breach on its systems and said it had since secured its site and was working with law enforcement agencies to try to trace those behind the attack. Avid Life’s CEO, Toronto-based Noel Biderman, is the .

The hackers, who call themselves The Impact Team, leaked snippets of the compromised data online and warned they would release customers’ real names, profiles, nude photos, credit card details and “secret sexual fantasies” unless their demands were met, Krebs said.

Avid Life did not disclose what information was stolen.

The hackers demanded the closure of another of Avid Life Media’s sites, sugar-daddy site “Established Men,” but did not target the company’s “CougarLife” site, which caters for women members looking for “a young stud.”

Ashley Madison, which uses the slogan “Life is short. Have an affair,” has been planning to raise up to $200 million through an initial public offering on the London Stock Exchange.

“We apologize for this unprovoked and criminal intrusion into our customers’ information,” Avid Life said, adding that the hackers left behind posts and images on the website detailing their demands. The unauthorized posts have since been removed.

The breach comes about two months after dating site Adult FriendFinder was compromised. That site has an estimated 64 million members.

The Impact Team, in a screengrab showing on the Krebs blog, say it had taken over Avid Media systems including customer databases, source code, financial records and emails.

“Shutting down AM (Ashley Madison) and EM (Established Men) will cost you, but non-compliance will cost you more,” the hackers said.

They said users who had paid a fee to Avid Life to have their personal data permanently deleted had been lied to and the company had retained records, including credit card information.

I hope you appreciated this article. Before you go, I’d like to ask you to please support the Forward’s award-winning, nonprofit journalism during this critical time.

Now more than ever, American Jews need independent news they can trust, with reporting driven by truth, not ideology. We serve you, not any ideological agenda.

At a time when other newsrooms are closing or cutting back, the Forward has removed its paywall and invested additional resources to report on the ground from Israel and around the U.S. on the impact of the war, rising antisemitism and the protests on college campuses.

Readers like you make it all possible. Support our work by becoming a Forward Member and connect with our journalism and your community.

Make a gift of any size and become a Forward member today. You’ll support our mission to tell the American Jewish story fully and fairly. 

— Rachel Fishman Feddersen, Publisher and CEO

Join our mission to tell the Jewish story fully and fairly.

Republish This Story

Please read before republishing

We’re happy to make this story available to republish for free, unless it originated with JTA, Haaretz or another publication (as indicated on the article) and as long as you follow our guidelines. You must credit the Forward, retain our pixel and preserve our canonical link in Google search.  See our full guidelines for more information, and this guide for detail about canonical URLs.

To republish, copy the HTML by clicking on the yellow button to the right; it includes our tracking pixel, all paragraph styles and hyperlinks, the author byline and credit to the Forward. It does not include images; to avoid copyright violations, you must add them manually, following our guidelines. Please email us at [email protected], subject line “republish,” with any questions or to let us know what stories you’re picking up.

We don't support Internet Explorer

Please use Chrome, Safari, Firefox, or Edge to view this site.