Married cheaters who were left red-faced, as well as battered and bruised financially, by the 2015 data breach of extra-marital affair website Ashley Madison have been offered a total of $11.2m (£8.5m) to settle a number of class actions.
Details of 33 million accounts were posted online two years ago, including sexual fantasies, nude pictures, real names and addresses and credit card details. The breach followed a warning by a hacking group, calling itself The Impact Team, that it would expose the details unless the site was taken down.
At the time, the company behind the site blamed the media for whipping up the storm, claiming: “Journalists have turned the focus of the criminal act against Ashley Madison inside out, attacking us instead of the hackers.”
It has since changed its name from Avid Media to Ruby Life.
The settlement still has to be reviewed by a judge, but if approved, Ruby Life will not admit to any wrongdoing, and will compensate individuals who were users of the site at the time of the breach who “submit valid claims for alleged losses resulting from the data breach and alleged misrepresentations”.
According to court papers, users with valid claims can recoup up to $3,500 (£2,680) depending on how well they can document their losses attributable to the breach.
In a statement, the company said: “The parties have agreed to the proposed settlement in order to avoid the uncertainty, expense, and inconvenience associated with continued litigation.”
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