The New York Post is reporting that the notorious Ashley Madison hookup site is boasting that more than 400,000 new users are signing-up for its “discreet” online dating services each month.
At the time of writing, the Ashley Madison website claims that “over 52,805,000” people have become members since 2002.
The New York Post quoted Paul Keable, VP of communications for Ruby Life, Ashley Madison’s new corporate parent, as it claimed members had risen a remarkable 50% since it suffered a devastating data breach at the hands of “The Impact Team”:
“We’re back, we’re excited and our opportunities are significant. Your math is accurate. In the summer of 2015 we experienced unprecedented media coverage of our business. Our monthly new member account additions have not been verified by a third party, but we stand behind them.”
The company bragged about a similar success story in January last year (when it was claiming over 43,485,000 members), which I found equally hard to believe.
Let’s do the maths.
January 2016 – 43,485,000
May 2017 – 52,805,000
That’s 9.3 million new members in less than 18 months, or over half a million new sign-ups per month.
Which is odd. In my experience most people’s thought when the name “Ashley Madison” is mentioned is not “dirty dating” but “data disaster.”
Of course, Ashley Madison is not offering any figures for how many people might have decided to delete their accounts, or may have signed-up while testing the site’s security, or indeed what proportion of its members are actually real or not.
In the past Ashley Madison was found to be creating fake female profiles, designed to trick unsuspecting men into purchasing credits in the mistaken belief that they would be chatting with a human being.
I have no idea whether Ashley Madison’s claimed membership figures are the result of bots, bogus numbers, or bozos who don’t care about the site’s appalling history.
And sadly, neither do you. Unless the stats are independently verified we have no way of knowing… and our only option is to trust Ashley Madison.
Trust? Ashley Madison?
Hmm. Quite.Further reading:
- Ashley Madison's leaked database available for download - read this first
- Ashley Madison blackmailers now sending threats via US postal system
- Here's what an Ashley Madison blackmail letter looks like
- Now it's Ashley Madison wives who are receiving blackmail letters
- 'Bring me the head of the AC/DC-loving Ashley Madison hacker'
- Suicide and Ashley Madison
- Ashley Madison: Betting site offers odds on who will be exposed
- 'Yes. I was a member of the Ashley Madison website. But I wasn’t there to cheat on anyone'
- Ashley Madison hack could expose 37 million 'cheating dirtbags'
- No Ashley Madison, you weren't burgled by terrorists
- Ashley Madison users warned of password risk
- Cracked Ashley Madison passwords consistent with years of poor security
- Post-hack, Ashley Madison offers members full and free account deletion
- Don't judge Ashley Madison users too quickly, their accounts may be fake
- Just who is joining the Ashley Madison website?
- Fembots land Ashley Madison in hot water with the FTC
- Ashley Madison's marketing department clearly didn't get the memo
- Ashley Madison: Further thoughts on its aftermath
- Ashley Madison hack claims another victim: Its CEO
- Ashley Madison slammed with $1.6 million fine for devastating data breach