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This Ashley Madison hack story keeps getting worse and worse [u4]

Richi Jennings | Aug. 27, 2015
Ashley Madison CEO Noel Biderman feels victimized by criminal hackers, but some observers aren't sympathetic

The Ashley Madison hack continues to make headlines. Naturally, that's because the news keeps getting worse and worse. And worse.

Worse for website owners Avid Media Group, sure. But worse for the real victims, more importantly -- i.e., for the millions of people named in the hacked data dump, and their families.

Prurient interest notwithstanding, there's still plenty to say about this uncomfortable event. And no shortage of intelligent commentators to say it.

In IT Blogwatch, bloggers furiously smh. Not to mention: 10 million ARM cores = Scarecrow's dream?...

curated these bloggy bits for your enlightenment.
[Developing story: Updated 10:31 am, 1:59 pm, 2:14 am and 9:30 am PT with more comment]

A previous version of this article contained a stupid Oz-related error. I am grateful to @skibum_mark for pointing it out in the comments below. I suppose someone should fire me.

As per usual, Brian Krebs cycles in to drop this frag grenade: [You're fired -Ed.]

Late last week, the Impact Team...released a 30-gigabyte archive that it said were emails lifted from AshleyMadison CEO Noel Biderman. [It alleges that] Raja Bhatia, the founding [CTO] hacked another dating website, exfiltrating their entire user database. ... “I got their entire user base,” Bhatia told Biderman.

As bad as this breach has been for AshleyMadison and its millions of users, it’s likely nowhere near over: Hackers...have just released a “selected dox” archive...including a 100-page movie script co-written by Biderman called “In Bed With Ashley Madison,”...a scan of the CEO’s drivers licence, copies of personal checks, bank account numbers, home address, and his income statements. ... Leaving aside the proliferation of sites that now allow suspicious spouses to search for their significant other’s email address...some users are finding themselves on the receiving end of online extortion attacks. Worse still, [there are] two unconfirmed reports of suicides.

Neither Bhatia nor Biderman could be immediately reached for comment.  MORE

Troy Hunt hears from "hundreds" of AM members per day:

I was being inundated with email...not just asking questions, but often giving me their life stories. [They] shed a very interesting light on the incident...that doesn’t come across in the sensationalist news stories.

One of the things that struck me most about the entire incident [is] the very poor communication from Avid Life. ... There has been no direct communication with members that I’m aware. [It's] if they’ve just stuck their fingers in their ears and sung “lalalalalala.” [They] solely focussed on no financial data being compromised. Do they really think that after the most intimate, private aspect of people’s lives has been put on public display that a credit what they’re worried about?!

I want to illustrate how important it is not to immediately assume that everyone on the site is cheating on their partner. [Don't] immediately make assumptions just because someone’s email address was on the site. ... Let us not confuse that with the issue of adultery. ... Many people were indeed just curious [but] extramarital affairs tear families apart. [Nevertheless] you can’t escape the human tragedy that this data breach has brought to a head.

This incident needs to be approached with the understanding that for many people, this is the worst time of their life and for some, it feels like the end of it.  MORE


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