Ashley Madison will pay $500k for info on who hacked it

The company has parterned with multiple law enforcement agencies, but is looking for even more help

Financial trends and news by Steven Loeb
August 24, 2015
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When people first heard about the Ashley Madison, everyone was at least somewhat amused by it. I mean, come on, we all felt a little bit of glee at all those cheaters getting caught!. Following reports of two suicides that have resulted from the leak, though. it has officially gone from funny to extremely tragic. Turns out these kinds of things do have really serious consequences.

After these reports came out, Avid Life Media, Ashley Madison's parent company, decided that it having none of it. And it is now offering a hefty bounty for those who can help it find those responsible. 

In a statement provided to VatorNews, Avid Life revealed that it is offering a $500,000 CDN ($376,662 USD) as a reward for "anyone who provides information to the Task Force that leads to the identification, arrest, and conviction of the person or persons responsible for the theft of proprietary data."

The company had already been working with law enforcement in Toronto, led by the Toronto Police Services (TPS), and accompanied by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, the Ontario Provincial Police, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, and the U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation, in a probe that is being called “Project Unicorn."

While the investigation is going well, the company said. "more help is needed from the outside," hence the bounty.

The company is still being cagey about what was stolen, and how many of its members were actually affected, however.

"In the very best interest of our customers, who have been affected by this malicious act, we are firmly committed to fully assisting these law enforcement and investigative authorities, without reserve," it wrote.

"Because of this active and ongoing investigation, there is little more we can provide at this time to the media and the public."

Avid first admitted that it was hacked in July, with the company saying that it had "immediately launched a thorough investigation utilizing leading forensics experts and other security professionals to determine the origin, nature, and scope of this incident."

While taking steps to take down information that was published online, the company could obviously not take back the information that was already stolen. And so, as was inevitable, the company revealed that that info had also been leaked online in a massive dump. 

The number of users who had some of their information stolen in the hack is said to be somewhere around 37 million, though there is speculation that that number is somewhat trumped up, given the high probability of users using burner email addresses to create accounts. 

One thing we do know is that Ashley Madison users did not have their credit card information stolen. The company went out of its way to make sure that piece of information was made public. Everything else is going to have to wait.

You can see the video of the Toronto police department's briefing on the Ashley Madison hack below:

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