The Stack Archive

Hacked Adult FriendFinder database reveals extramarital affairs of millions

Fri 22 May 2015

Casual adult dating website FriendFinder has been hacked with details of millions of users leaked online, according to a report from British broadcaster Channel 4 News.

The website, which lists over 63 million global users, is one of the largest dating and casual hook-up platforms online – Tinder trails the service with an estimated 50 million users worldwide.

An investigation has now found that an approximate 3.9 million members’ accounts had been hacked more than two months ago, and leaked online. The data continues to diffuse in spreadsheets across internet forums.

The breached data includes information on the users’ sexual preferences, email addresses, sexual orientation, dates of birth, addresses, usernames, and whether the member is seeking extramarital relationships – all of which paints an extremely clear picture of the victim and is potentially highly sensitive and embarrassing.

Adult FriendFinder is yet to confirm how the data was leaked – but concerns are rising about the potential for spamming and blackmailing.

Channel 4 News also revealed how embarrassing the leak was for the company itself, with almost no women found to be using the so-called “thriving sex community.”

“Among the 26,939 users with a UK email address,” technology producer Geoff White explains that there were, “just 1,596 who identified as female: a ratio of one woman to every 16 men.”

In a statement, the website’s owner California-based FriendFinder Networks Inc., said in an advisory statement that it “understands and fully appreciates the seriousness of the issue. We have already begun working closely with law enforcement and have launched a comprehensive investigation with the help of leading third-party forensics expert.”

“Until the investigation is completed, it will be difficult to determine with certainty the full scope of the incident, but we will continue to work vigilantly to address this potential issue and will provide updates,” FriendFinder said.

The company added: “We pledge to take the appropriate steps needed to protect our customers if they are affected.”


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