Will Downloading Ashley Madison Leaked List Of 32 Million Users Give You A Virus? Maybe — And Data May Not Be Real

Recent reports have sent Twitter into a frenzy, with claims that the leaked Ashley Madison user data has been published online. As reported by the Inquisitr, folks are already analyzing the breakdown of the types of email addresses that appear on the purported 10 GB list of 32 million Ashley Madison users. People are already sharing screenshots of some of the email address that have accompanied this latest huge leak and, along with it, warnings that Ashley Madison never verified email addresses — netizens have been advised to take the list with a grain of salt.

This latest update to the Ashley Madison hack brings forth two major questions. The first one being: Will downloading the Ashley Madison hacked list of leaked names from the dark web provide a virus to those who download the lists? And secondly: How do folks know those lists are really Ashley Madison users?

First off, attempting to download any list from PasteBin or other sites like Mega.nz that claim to house the full Ashley Madison leaked data is taking a gamble. Plenty of users could’ve already duplicated the introductory text that the Impact Team provided, and instead of downloading zipped files of Ashley Madison users, the downloader could be downloading malware or nefarious scripts onto their laptops or devices that hackers could try and use to get access to the downloader’s info.

It could be safer to use a site like Trustify, which claims they are adding Ashley Madison data in a searchable format for others to use to search for their own information to make sure they haven’t been hacked.

“Trustify August 18 Update: We are adding data from the leaked Ashley Madison database. Hackers are working 24 hours a day to expose confidential information, such as the recent Ashley Madison hack, with this kind of information often becoming available to people making critical decisions that impact your life. Many people have faced embarrassment, professional problems, and even divorce, when it was discovered that they were on Adult Friend Finder. Protect yourself by knowing if you’re exposed. Enter your email address to see if your sexual preferences and other information was exposed.”

However, with many folks assuming that the Ashley Madison hacked leaked data is legitimate, Brian Krebs has spoken with the former Ashley Madison CTO, and he reported that there are no indications that this most recently leaked data is actually real. Therefore, those fearing the worst might have gotten a reprieve.

[Image via Ashley Madison]