In Ashley Madison Dump: 15K Government Emails
Data stolen from infidelity website could spawn 'blackmail archive'
By Michael Harthorne,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 19, 2015 7:00 PM CDT
The leak of data belonging to users of infidelity website AshleyMadison.com reportedly includes approximately 15,000 government email addresses.   (AP Photo/Lee Jin-man, File)

(Newser) – Data stolen in last month's hack of cheating website AshleyMadison.com and released yesterday has revealed approximately 15,000 government email addresses, creating what CSO calls a massive "blackmail archive." Email addresses found within the nearly 37 million records made public are registered to the White House, military, and federal agencies, possibly including the State Department, Department of Homeland Security, House of Representatives, and Senate, the Hill reports. Washington, DC, was reported as having the highest AshleyMadison.com membership in the United States. The leak is not short on details: It contains the full names, phone numbers, addresses, passwords, GPS coordinates, and financial records of Ashley Madison users.

The US isn't the only country facing embarrassing repercussions; the Hill reports email addresses linked to the British government, United Nations, and Vatican were also found. According to the Telegraph, more than 100 UK government emails addresses were included in the leak. However, it's likely many of the email addresses were fake, the Hill notes. Ashley Madison doesn't require new users to verify email addresses, and some leaked addresses were registered to "whitehouse.gov," which is not used by White House officials. One elected (and married) politician in the United Kingdom already acknowledged her email address was in the leak but says someone used it without her permission, per the Telegraph. Still, "This dump appears to be legit," says one analyst. "Very, very legit." (A woman found her ex's email address in the data, and he confirmed.)