I hope this is the last post I ever write about hack of the Ashley Madison cheat-yer-spouse site.

But a couple of updates are worth noting, if only as an illustration of the fact that, in general, the world is a reasonable place, and reasonable people should know that.

First, as the shards land, it turns out that almost none of the women in the Ashley Madison database ever used the site.

Gizmodo data analysts looked into that:

Those millions of Ashley Madison men were paying to hook up with women who appeared to have created profiles and then simply disappeared. Were they cobbled together by bots and bored admins, or just user debris? Whatever the answer, the more I examined those 5.5 million female profiles, the more obvious it became that none of them had ever talked to men on the site, or even used the site at all after creating a profile.

Actually, scratch that. As I’ll explain below, there’s a good chance that about 12,000 of the profiles out of millions belonged to actual, real women who were active users of Ashley Madison… we’re left with data that suggests Ashley Madison is a site where tens of millions of men write mail, chat, and spend money for women who aren’t there. More.  

So users were paying to cheat themselves? That said, a TV show is said to be in the works. Let’s hope no one is paying for it.

Second, it is at least possible that the hack was an inside job:

In an article for the International Business Times, the eccentric creator of McAfee antivirus software alleges that the extramarital relationship website was breached by a “lone female who worked for Avid Life Media.” Last month, a group calling itself the Impact Team leaked private data of more than 30 million users along with internal company documents and emails. It’s those internal documents — including such mundane items as maintenance schedules and an office layout — that McAfee claims led to him to conclude the breach was an inside job, not the work of outside hackers to whom the information would be of little value.

Sure, plausible. We’ll never know.

McAfee himself has an interesting history, below. But that shouldn’t stop us from conceding that he knows about hacks.

See also: Pastors named (rightly or otherwise – those claims could be false too!) The point is closer to this: [O, what a tangled web we weave when first we practise to deceive!- Walter Scott]

 

Denyse O’Leary is a Canadian journalist, author, and blogger.

 

The point is closer to this: [O, what a tangled web we weave when first we practise to deceive!- Walter Scott]

 

Denyse O’Leary is a Canadian journalist, author, and blogger.

Denyse O’Leary is an author, journalist, and blogger who has mainly written popular science and social science. Fellow Canadian Marshall McLuhan’s description of electronic media as a global village...