Hackers who stole sensitive customer information from the cheating site AshleyMadison.com appear to have made good on their threat to post the data online.... The data released by the hackers includes names, addresses and phone numbers submitted by users of the site, though it’s unclear if members provided legitimate details. A sampling of the data indicates that users likely provided random numbers and addresses, but files containing credit card transactions will yield real names and addresses, unless members of the site used anonymous pre-paid cards. One analysis of email addresses found in the data dump also shows that some 15,000 are .mil. or .gov addresses.

The data also includes descriptions of what members were seeking. “I’m looking for someone who isn’t happy at home or just bored and looking for some excitement,” wrote one member who provided an address in Ottawa and the name and phone number of someone who works for the Customs and Immigration Union in Canada. “I love it when I’m called and told I have 15 minutes to get to someplace where I’ll be greeted at the door with a surprise—maybe lingerie, nakedness. I like to ravish and be ravished … I like lots of foreplay and stamina, fun, discretion, oral, even willingness to experiment—*smile*”

The hackers posted a message for the husbands and wives of cheaters, wannabe cheaters, and folks who were only fantasizing about cheating they exposed and the exposed cheaters, wannabe cheaters, and folks who were only fantasizing about cheating:

Find someone you know in here? Keep in mind the site is a scam with thousands of fake female profiles. See ashley madison fake profile lawsuit; 90-95% of actual users are male. Chances are your man signed up on the world's biggest affair site, but never had one. He just tried to. If that distinction matters.

Find yourself in here? It was ALM that failed you and lied to you. Prosecute them and claim damages. Then move on with your life. Learn your lesson and make amends. Embarrassing now, but you'll get over it.

Disgruntled/exposed/ruined Ashley Madison users will have grounds to sue. The company promised users their data was completely secure—they told their users that they had the best privacy controls on the web—but their data was vulnerable and they knew it:

Senior staff at Ashley Madison, the hacked extramarital dating site, were raising concerns over its security procedures as recently as June, just a month before the site was attacked. Internal documents leaked as part of the attack show concerns over “a lack of security awareness across the organisation” being raised by one vice president. A database containing the documents and more than 30 million user records exfiltrated in the attack, was posted to the internet on Tuesday.

John Herman at The Awl predicts the Ashley Madison hack is not just going to impact Ashley Madison users and their partners:

[This] feels like a momentous event. Barring some sort of heroic cleanup effort on the part of the entire internet—which I guess, between Twitter moderation and aggressive lawyering, isn’t totally impossible—millions of lives may be about to change profoundly. It’s easy to kid about the fact that these people were using a site intended to help them cheat. But if understood in more abstract terms, this hack has the potential to alter anyone’s relationship with the devices and apps and services they use every day. Here were millions of people expecting the highest level of privacy that the commercial web could offer as they conducted business they likely wanted to keep between two people (even if a great number of the emails are junk, or attached to casual gawkers, the leak claims to contain nine million transaction records). This hack could be ruinous—personally, professionally, financially—for them and their families. But for everyone else, it could haunt every email, private message, text and transaction across an internet where privacy has been taken for granted. Ashley Madison, in the strange hacker economy of 2015, may have had an especially big target on its back. But it’s a powerful reminder of the impossibility of perfect privacy.

And here's my take on the Ashley Madison hack—and here's hoping there are a few happy endings this morning for wannabe cheaters...