The Day Someone Signed Me Up For An Ashley Madison Account (That Day Would Be Yesterday)

from the so-creative dept

We’ve written a few times now about the leak of data from Ashley Madison, the “dating site for people who want to cheat on their spouses,” mostly discussing the company’s bizarre infatuation with abusing copyright law to try to take down anyone posting content from the leak. We haven’t taken part in any of the stories about naming and shaming individuals who have been found in the database (or just where they might work). As a lot of people have been noting (thankfully) in their stories, for no clear reason, Avid Life Media (the company that owns Ashley Madison) doesn’t do email verification. That means anyone can create an account using anyone else’s email address. In fact, last month, reporter Farai Chideya noted that someone had created an account using her email.

And, apparently, someone thought it would be funny to do the same to me. Yesterday afternoon, I got a message telling me “Welcome to Day 1 of your Ashley Madison Experience.” Someone using my email signed me up, using the rather creative account name “masnicator.” I’m kinda surprised that Ashley Madison is still even allowing online signups (let alone not using an email verification system, or for that matter even keeping the site up at all). But, perhaps even more ridiculous is that in the “welcome” email, it highlights how the service is “100% Secure.”

Perhaps even more amusing is that just three minutes after this fake registration, I also got a fake message from someone.
And, no, I’m not going to see what the message is, nor even let the image show up (not even for journalistic curiosity). But this certainly adds that much more support to the theory that the site regularly used fake profiles and fake come ons to get men to pay up. As if anyone is (1) still using the site at all and (2) going to respond to an obviously bogus account three minutes after it’s created.

As if to hammer home just how bogus the whole thing is, the site sent me another email just a few hours later, claiming that it was showing me new people who had just signed up near me. Of course, if anyone is actually “signing up” now, I’m guessing it’s for the same reason that someone signed me up: to mess with people or to joke around.

Not sure why whoever did this did this, though, I guess thanks for the story?

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Companies: ashley madison

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Comments on “The Day Someone Signed Me Up For An Ashley Madison Account (That Day Would Be Yesterday)”

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Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Re:

That’s just a fake publicity stunt to make it look like they can’t keep up with the idiocy and that they don’t lack material. Besides Techdirt steals all their content from everyone else. It’s nothing but a pirate site.

Ok, since someone will mistaken this for a serious post I will put a /sarc tag


Anonymous Coward says:

Only two people would ever know about this except that you DID make it a story!

That you actually took the bait and run with it is the mistake. YOU are doing the needed publicizing, and the “Streisand Effect” quipper should know better than to create needless publicity! — You’re so desperate for stories that I wonder if you didn’t sign up yourself! Because what use is it to anyone else UNLESS YOU publicize it?

Gwiz (profile) says:

Re: Only two people would ever know about this except that you DID make it a story!

Because what use is it to anyone else UNLESS YOU publicize it?

When reading this article my first thought was that you, Blue, where responsible for this.

It doesn’t seem out of character that you would do this and then use it as some sort of ammo the next time an article on this subject came up. This would be right in line with your overwhelming obsession to discredit Techdirt at any cost.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Only two people would ever know about this except that you DID make it a story!

Yep, par for the course from Blue. The person who loves to point out that Google CO-SPONSORED (I put that in caps in the hopes that it clicks in his head how co-sponsors work in regards to, well, anything) one specific thing that Mike himself has listed on this website. As if it’s some grandiose conspiracy that Mike is hiding at every possible turn. (It’s on the website, Blue! We can all see it! You literally are making mountains out of a molehill we’ve all been aware about since forever and a day. And it’s not the mountain you make it out to be! Sponsor != employer)

PaulT (profile) says:

Re: Re: Only two people would ever know about this except that you DID make it a story!

“This would be right in line with your overwhelming obsession to discredit Techdirt at any cost.”

It would also be the first time he had something factual and non-tangential to work with. You can only run with “Mike noted that piracy isn’t the worst thing ever therefore he’s a pirate” and “Mike publicised Google sponsorship on another site therefore he works for them” so many times before even the obsessed stalker gets bored. Why not create actual “evidence” from hand so there’s soemthing concrete to point to?

That Anonymous Coward (profile) says:

Not It.

The beast, so bloated, did not notice its mortal wounds and keep trudging forward. Messages sent, flirtations imagined, all to get another monthly fee – unaware that the transactions would not finish. Another sign up, see how special and shiny we are, give us money, send flirtation #28972… the money will flow as the zombie beast kept plodding forward.

tqk (profile) says:

They'll delete it for only $19. :-)

They were making two million bucks a year off only that fraudulent claim.

I too am quite astonished they’re still even in business, much less accepting (or receiving) new signups, and still not bothering to verify email addresses! You’d have to be living in a cave to not know about ALM’s shenanigans by now. I’d never even heard of them before these stories broke.

The story on Wired actually lauds them for not being too bad at IT noting they even used bcrypt. Now you know what Wired‘s opinions are worth if you didn’t before.

Mike Masnick (profile) says:

Re: A priest visits a sex shop...

That’s what this article made me think about, somebody else signed me in, that’s what they ALL say…

Ha! Yes. Though, at least this happened after the hack, so it’s not like my info shows up in the leaked data that everyone’s searching through.

Though, since posting this I’ve heard from a couple friends (both with somewhat generic emails) that say their emails got included a while back. I tend to believe them, but it is interesting.

Steven says:

Same issue, other sites...

I had this issue with Friendster. Someone signed up my email address a few years back. You could not contact them without an account. I had to create an account just to ask them to remove the other account.

I not long after that and I think on 2 different occasions had the same issue at Facebook. But hard to contact facebook regardless of whether u have an account. The only time they responded to me I do not know how I contacted them in such a way that I got a response but they told me basically to go get a lawyer if I do not like it. The only thing I could do was to (claim it) by doing a password change request as my only method of getting the account deleted.

Would be that the site you are referencing were the only offender but bigger fish are doing the same thing.

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