On the Screen

Time Code

Dialogue

PRE-TITLE TEXT

10:00:02

Distorted voice:

We are the Impact team.

We have taken over all systems in your entire office

Ashley Madison must shut down immediately.

We will release all customers records, sexual fantasies, nude pictures, …  and employee emails.   

Welcome to your worst fucking nightmare

 

 

Archive: ABC Nightline

 

 

10:00:23

Biderman:

Long before I launched Ashley Madison there were affairs, and long after I'm gone there'll be affairs and so what I’m just trying to do is help people have the most perfect affair.

 Archive: ABC Nightline

 

10:00:30

Archive VO:

Biderman says he built a billion-dollar business betting on infidelity. 25 million members in 37 countries.

 

 Tasmin

10:00:39

Tasmin: 

My phone was dancing across the table - it was crazy. 

 

 

 Christopher

10:00:45

Christopher:

They made it sound like it was this play land of people hooking up... 

 

 

 Gina

10:00:49

Gina:  

it had glamour, sex and crime, hacking and danger. It had everything

 

 

   Tasmin

 

 

 

 

10:00:58

Tasmin: 

Kind of a quick hookup kind of site…

 

 

TEXT CARD

10:01:00

Logo:

Journeyman Pictures

 

 

TEXT CARD

10:01:40

Text card:

 Ashley Madison: Sex, Lies & Cyber Attacks

 

FD AM site: Avid Dating Life, Inc. 2001-2016

10:01:06

VO:

This is the story of a website, and the rise and fall of its ambitious founder Noel Biderman.

The audacious Ashely Madison dot com was set up

in 2001 as a safe place to arrange illicit affairs.

By 2006 the site had 1.1million users in North America and had launched in Europe.  Its growth after that was extraordinary

 


 

Archive: The Artie Lang Show

10:01:30

Artie Lang:

26 million people - that's growth! What is your goal? Just keep goin’?

 

 Archive: The Artie Lang  Show

10:01:35

Noel Biderman:

World domination - keep going to the moon.

        

 

 

 Still

10:01:38

VO:

In 2007 Biderman became CEO - and found himself in the middle of a media storm 

 

 

Archive: ABC Nightline

10:01:44

Noel Biderman: 

I’m not necessarily encouraging infidelity, I don’t think it needs that much encouragement. Woman: How are you not encouraging infidelity?

 

Archive: Naked News

 

Still: Stella Pictures

 

 

10:01:49

 

 

 

 

 

 

VO: 

Noel Biderman appeared continuously on TV chat shows defending and promoting the site. He called himself “the king of infidelity”.

 

 

Still: Getty Images

 

10:02:00

VO:

His wife, Amanda, also took part in the promotions

 

Archive: ABC Nightline

10:02:04

Noel Biderman:  

I see it as a platform that helps people stay married, they help millions of people find contentment, passion and happiness.

 

C/U Louise Van Der Velde

 

  Caption:

  Louise Van Der Velde

Pleasure Professor & Ashley Madison Ambassador 2013

10:02:11

Louise:

Noel said that society was changing, the model of relationships that we have from the past and at the moment isn’t working. A lot of people are having affairs and it’s all done behind people’s backs. It’s destructive for families. And they said that they were leading the way in helping with this

 


 

C/U Christoper

 

10:02:27

Christopher: 

I was separated from my wife, I was working a lot. It’s hard to meet people

 

 Christopher

10:02:34

  VO:

Christopher was looking for a like-minded woman

to have an affair with.  

 

C/U Christoper

 

Caption:

Christopher Russell

Ashley Madison user

 

10:02:37

Christopher: 

The big attraction to it was that it's a hookup, it's not a date. There isn't any of the risk you know, everybody knows where they stand.

 

C/U Tamsin

 

Caption:

Tasminb

Ashley Madison User

10:02:47

Tasmin:

It was definitely more geared towards sort of the, as I like to say, the afternoon delight, kind of situation. Kind of a quick hook up kind of site.

 

 Tasmin

10:02:59

VO:

Like any dating site, users had to choose profile names and fill in their preferences.

 

 Tasmin

10:03:04

Tasmin: 

Experimenting with tantric sex. One-night stand..

 

 

 

 

Tasmin

 

 

 

 

 

 10:03:07

VO:

Although these choices were a little more direct than usual…  

 

Tasmin

 10:03:10

Tasmin:

… Likes to be watched., cuddling and hugging, and erotic movies. Sounds like an interesting weekend.

 Tasmin

10:03:20

VO:

Tamsin is a marketing consultant and a serial mistress.  She has chosen affairs to committed relationships most of her life.

 Tasmin

10:03:27

Tasmin: 

Initially, you know, men are very hesitant to make the first move. When we start talking that's the first thing. They want to find out, are you real? Do you really live in the United States?


 

 Christopher

10:03:39

Christopher: 

And that's when I would start getting … emails saying that this woman checked out your profile, she wants to talk to you, this person's interested in you. And because if you didn't have a paid account, you hadn't bought the credits, you couldn't see the actual pictures of the profiles - they were all blurred.

 

 Website

10:03:57

VO: 

Men had to buy credits in order to reply to messages sent to them. 

 

 Tasmin

10:04:03 

Tasim: 

And then once you start talking, inevitably for some strange reason, men have this insatiable desire to send you dick pictures. Pictures of their penises  - sometimes it’s even the first picture. I don't even know what their face looks like.

 

…okay.

 

 Christopher

10:04:21

Christopher:

People have affairs and cheat for a lot of different reasons – it’s not always just physical. We all like to think it's that but in reality even men, the vast majority are seeking out an affair for emotional reasons as well.

 

 Tasmin

10:04:37

Tasmin: 

I did meet and talk to quite a few men, a lot of politicians ... A lot of corporate CEOs, a lot of guys who are just in middle management, just not happy. I mean that was one thing about Ashley Madison you got everything from construction workers and students so it was pretty interesting.  

 

 Louise

10:04:58

Louise:

People want more from their relationships, more from their lives and not feeling so ashamed to be honest about what they really want. People are gonna have affairs anyway - it's always happened, it's on an increase. It wasn't in the workplace. It wasn't with  close friends of the family. I got that concept. It's less damaging, people's needs get met.

 

 FD: Company video

 

 AP photo

10:06:00

VO: 

Ashley Madison.com was bought by another of

Noel’s companies Avid Life Media in 2007. Their promotional videos gave a veneer of corporate acceptability to otherwise niche products.


 

FD: Established

Men

10:06:14

VO:

Two years later they created EstablishedMen.comand CougarLife.com calling them

“innovative dating services”  

 

But the main money maker was always Ashley

Madison. 

 

FD AD: “Other Than My

Wife”

 

Marc Morgenstern - Avid Life Media Inc

- 2014

 

10:05:44

 

AD:

Looking for someone other than my wife.

…other than my wife, Ashley Madison’s right

 FD AD: “Other Than My

Wife”

 

Marc Morgenstern - Avid Life Media Inc

- 2014

10:05:53

 

VO: 

Ashley Madison became known for their cheeky, often outrageous, press campaigns

 

This cheesy advert was banned by Australian regulators

 

 

FD AD

“Bedroom Frolic” Marc Morgenstern - Avid Life Media Inc

- 2014

 

10:06:15

 

VO:

They courted controversy around the world, translating their glossy ads everywhere they went. 

 

 

 

 

AD: AshleyMadison.com (German version)

10:06:22

AD:

Das Leben ist kurz. Gönn’ Dir eine Affäre.

Still: Reuters (Tiger Woods)

 

 

10: 06:25

 

VO:

In 2009 Tiger Woods was caught cheating on his wife. Within a week Ashley Madison had offered to pay him $5 million to be the face of the brand. 

 

He didn’t take the money, but 4 months later they had sponsored the tiger woods mistress pageant on the Howard Stern show.

 

 

FD Howard Stern: “The Howard Stern

Show”

Howard Stern -

Sirius XM - 2010

 

10:06:42

 

Howard Stern:

Here’s our guest judge Noel Biderman. Dude put up a hundred grand.

 

 FD Howard Stern: “The Howard Stern

Show”

Howard Stern -

Sirius XM - 2010

10:06:47

 

VO:

It seemed that no gimmick was too tabloid…

 

FD Howard Stern: “The Howard Stern

Show”

Howard Stern -

Sirius XM - 2010

10:06:49

 

 Howard Stern:

… she’s mistress number four…


 

Gina

 

Caption: Gina Smith, Editor- in-Chief, aNewDomain Media

 

10:06:51

 

Gina :

The peculiar genius not just of their marketing efforts but I think of their leadership seems to be to be able to take anything, even negative news and turn it into a promotional opportunity.

 

FD  Howard strern

 

10:07:03

 

Howard archive:   

  

 

Split screen

 

Archive: Prelinger

 

Still: Stella Pictures

 

10:07:14 

 

VO: 

Despite the 2008 economic downturn, AM appeared

to be recession-proof..

 

By 2015 Avid life media announced that they had grossed $115m in the previous year, up

45%. Pre-tax profits came in at $55m.

 

Hack Images

 

FD WEB SITES AM

& EM

Avid Dating Life, Inc. 2001-2016

 

EM Media, Inc.,

Avid Life Media

2008-201

10:07:37

 

VO:

But then, on 19th July last year, everything changed. 

 

Brian Krebbs, a tech journalist, revealed that Ashley Madison had been hacked. Employees had opened their computers to find an illustrated message on their screens…. “the Impact team” hackers threatened to publish stolen data unless Ashley Madison and Established Men shut down their controversial websites

 

 

Archive

 

Caption: Toronto Police News Conference, August 24th 2015

 

10:08:03

 

 Toronto police:

  The consequences for not complying as noted in this threat    would be the release of Ashley Madison and Established Men client list, including their names, client profiles and credit card data. 

 

Gina

 

10:08:16

 

Gina

By the time I've read the story it hit them, it was all over the world. I think every major news agency had already covered it within 6 - 12 hours. …..

 

Archive: Toronto Police - Press conference

 

10:08:25

 

 Toronto police

Avid Life Media has been fully cooperating with the police investigation. 

This hack is one of the largest data breaches in the world.


 

Tamsin

 

10:08:38

 

Tamsin: 

I was in a meeting and … all of a sudden my phone started dancing across the table, and I'm trying to concentrate, and I'm looking over and I’m seeing the names of business associates, my business clients, friends of mine ...people I had met on Ashley Madison contacting me. And my heart sank. 

 

Gina Smith

 

10:09:01

 

Gina:

The hack appeared very strange because it was so ‘hollywoodesque’ as if it had been scripted. Crazily so, I mean when you cover hacks all the time, It's always very dry…. Nobody's very interested in the details of how they actually got the data and spread it…. But this was different. 

 

VO

 

TEXT CARD:  So far, Ashley Madison has not complied. This is your last warning

 

 

 

10:09:19

 

VO: 

The impact team gave Avid Life 30 days to shut down their sitesenough time for the media to get into frenzy.

 

Joseph Cox

 

10:09:32

 

Joseph:

The hackers were blackmailing with the threat of more data to come.

 

 

Archive: Prelinger: Journalism

10:09:36

 

VO: 

Everyone was desperate to know who was using the world’s number one website for adultery?  

 

Text card: TIMES

UP!

 

10:09:43

 

VO:

When the company didn’t comply, over 30 million

user details were released…

 

Text card

 

10:09:48

 

Text: 

Avid Life Media has failed it take down Ashley Madison and Established Men. We have explained the fraud, deceit and stupidity of alm and their members. Now everyone gets to see their data.

 

FD Radio Show in BG: “The Fitzy & Wippa

Show” Ryan Fitzgerald/Michael Wipfli - Nova Entertainment 2015

10:09:53

 

VO: 

Across the world suspicious partners frantically tried to find out if their partner was among them.

 

One Australian radio show went a step further:

They were happy to help trawl through the data dump. Live on air

 


 

FD Radio Show in BG: “The Fitzy & Wippa

Show” Ryan Fitzgerald/Michael Wipfli - Nova Entertainment 2015

 

10:10:07

 

Joe (on the phone):

When that little thing came on the news about the Ashley Madison hack he sort of went a bit funny… you’ve got his details…

 

 FD Radio Show in BG: “The Fitzy & Wippa

Show” Ryan Fitzgerald/Michael Wipfli - Nova Entertainment 2015

10:10:13

 

Radio DJ:

... We’ve got his details here. And his details have revealed that he's actually on the website Joe ...

 

 

 FD Radio Show in BG: “The Fitzy & Wippa

Show” Ryan Fitzgerald/Michael Wipfli - Nova Entertainment 2015

10:10:22

 

Joe

Are you... Are you serious?

 

 FD Radio Show in BG: “The Fitzy & Wippa

Show” Ryan Fitzgerald/Michael Wipfli - Nova Entertainment 2015

10:10:23

 

Radio DJ:

Yeah, I’m sorry…

 

 FD Radio Show in BG: “The Fitzy & Wippa

Show” Ryan Fitzgerald/Michael Wipfli - Nova Entertainment 2015

10:10:25

 

Joe:

Are you freaking kidding me?

 

Archive: Toronto Police - Press conference

 

10:10:27

 

Policeman: 

The ripple effect of the impact team’s actions has and will continue to have a long term social and economic impact, and they have already sparked spinoffs of crimes and further victimisation

C/U Tamsin 

 

10:10:40

 

 Tasmin: 

I had quite a few of the gentlemen that I had met and talked to...their wives were decimated and hurt and they wanted to talk.

 

Archive: Toronto Police - Press conference

 

 

10:10:52

 

Policeman: 

As of this morning we have two unconfirmed reports of suicides associated because of the leak of Ashley Madison’s customers profiles  

 

C/U Gina Smith

 

10:11:03

 

Gina:

This being covered as if - the CIA had been hacked. What is so interesting here is that somebody would want to do this


 

Archive: Prelinger: Jealousy

 

10:11:12

 

VO: 

Many celebrities, politicians, religious leaders and military personnel were reported to be members….

 

Archive: Prelinger: Jealousy

 

10:11:18

 Woman:

Just tell me her name, you might as well tell me…

Sam Rader

 

Caption: Sam Rader

Christian Vlogger

 

10:11:2 0

 

Sam: 

This was brought to wife’s attention. She has forgiven me for this mistake that I’ve made. I've sought forgiveness to god and he's forgiven me so I've been completely cleansed of this sin

 

Archive: Prelinger: Journalism

 

10:11:33

 

VO: 

After the frenzy around user identities had died

down, the media turned its attention to the business itself.

 

FD ALL

WEBSITES

 

Ashley babes

Avid Life Media Inc

Praecellens Limited, Avid Dating Life Inc

 

Mancrunch

Established Men Inc, Avid Life Media

2008-2016

 

Milfbook

Chad Williams/Established Men Inc, Avid Life Media,  Date 2014

 

Escorts.ca

Avid life media / Steeltown Marketing Inc. 2013-16

 

 

10:11:41

 

VO: 

It became obvious that Avid Life Media profited from a wide range of websites… and not all of them were not dating services …

 


 

FD AD: “Affair anywhere” Marc Morgenster, Avid Life Media

2012

 

 

FD Am website

Avid Dating Life, Inc. 2001-2016

 

10:11:58

 

VO:  

Ashley Madison’s meteoric rise continued unabated and by 2015 they claimed to have over 30 million users. They even launched their very own “Affair Anywhere” mobile app and brazenly spread the word around the globe. 

 

 

But on the 19th July the site was hacked to catastrophic effect.

 

It would become one of the largest cyber breaches of all time.

 

Archive: Toronto Police -

Press conference

 

10:12:33

 

 Policeman archive:

Multiple sites are now being downloaded – nobody is going to be able to erase that information. 

 

 VO

10:12:40 

 

VO: 

But despite the sensitivity of the website, we now know that Ashley Madison was warned of security vulnerabilities a number of times before the 2015 scandal. 

 

Caption: Manila, Philippines

 

10:12:55

 

VO:

The Phillipines has become an unlikely global cyber hotspot. 

 

Jayson Zabate is a Filipino hacker.  He managed to

infiltrate the website in the months before the disastrous hack of July 2015.  

 

 

C/U Jayson

 

10:13:10

 

Jayson: 

Just checking Ashley Madison website. I try to hack it.

I check the code and try to find out what is the flaw or weakness. 

 

 Jayson

10:13:22

 

VO:  

Jason is part of an international community of cyber bounty hunters known as ‘white hat’ hackers.

 


 

 Jayson

10:13:28

 

Jayson:

My job is to help keep companies secure. I don’t want to be a black hat. I’m not a bad guy.

 

 Jayson

10:13:36

 

VO:

These hackers can make a lot of money by showing large companies where their vulnerabilities lie. Jayson pays his university fees this way.

 

He found a way into Ashley Madison relatively quickly.  

 

C/U Jayson

10:13:52

 

Jayson:

 I have found cross site scripting and bypassing cross site requests forgery, that allow an attacker to change profile details.

 

 Jayson

10:14:02

 

 VO:

Jayson told Avid Life Media he had managed to find a flaw in their security and they paid him a small fee in return for information.  

 

But it was too late… the Impact team of hackers had apparently been accessing the site for a long time before Jayson got there. 

 

C/U Joseph

 

10:14:17

 

Joseph: 

Impact team claims they had been watching the site grow for some time to the tens of millions of users. And they said they wanted to stop the next 60 million customers. They likened Avid Life Media to a drug dealer abusing addicts.

 

 Joseph

10:14:33

 

VO: 

Joseph Cox believes he is the only journalist to have had contact with the Impact hackers themselves. 

 

 Joseph

 

10:14:38

 

Joseph: 

Impact team said when they hacked Ashley Madison no one was watching. As in there were very few security barriers to getting into the network and they also said it was possible to hop from different parts of the network with a very simple password. And this had been in the work for some time. The said that they had been exfiltrating the data over a number of years. 

 

Caption: Jeremy Bullock

Data Scientist

 

10:15:02

 

 Jeremy Bullock: 

Ashley Madison talked a good game about their security but as we’ve seen, Security was not at the top of their agenda, what was at the top of their agenda was making money.


 

Archive: Prelinger

 

10:15:11

 

 VO: 

Jeremy Bullock is a data analyst who used the information released in the hack to analyse AM’s business practices. He was one of the first to identify the company’s use of ‘fembots’.

 

When he looked at the email addresses of users, he discovered 837 individual members that all shared the same email address. These seemed to be fake profiles who were programmed to contact real users. They have also been called engagers or “iconians”. 

 

C/U Jeremy

 

10:15:41

 

Jeremy Bullock:

These were algorithms that enabled Ashley Madison to contact gullible men and pretend to be available women and made them part with money. 

 

FD Website

 

10:15:54

 

VO: 

“Iconians” would send messages to users of the site. In order for men to “chat back” they would have to pay. 

 

 Jeremy

10:16:02

 

Jeremy Bullock:

Why 837 rather than 80,000? – Because they didn’t need 80,000. 

 

You could move these 837 around, you could make

them different. They were programs now, they didn’t have to be manually manipulated. Very very clever. 

 

 Christopher

10:16:18

 

Christopher:

They made it sound like it was this play land of people hooking up and there’s millions of women here and they’re all interested in you.  I had contact with probably around 200 profiles and out of that I believe I spoke with one actual person. 

 

Caption: Los Angeles, USA

10:16:43

 

VO: 

But the idea that bots and fake profiles were on the pages of Ashley Madison was not new. As early as 2008 consumer attorney Fillippo Marchino was preparing a case against avid life media on behalf of disgruntled users. 

 

Caption: Fillippo Marchino

Attorny

 

10:17:00

 

Fillippo: 

One of the first things we did is we pulled the terms and conditions off of the website of Ashley Madison and buried in the middle …was a couple of sentences that read something to the extent of "this is only an entertainment website, you may be responding or contacted by robots" and that just did not sound right because people were not engaging AshleyMadison.com to talk to robots. That was not the crux of the idea. 


 

 Fillippo

10:17:30

 

VO:

Fillippo then came across AshleyMadisonSucks.com, a sounding board for unhappy customers. He discovered that Biderman’s company, Avid Life Media was taking legal action against the site. 

 

 Fillippo

10:17:42

 

Fillippo:

We felt that AshleyMadisonSucks.com was a

rightful forum for people to voice their opinions and was in no way violative of the trademark AshleyMadison.com. 

 

 Fillippo

10:17:55

 VO:

Fillippo agreed to represent the owner of

ashleymadison sucks.com 

 

 Fillippo

10:17:59

 

 Fillippo: 

What happened then is that things got strange. The proverbial shit hit the proverbial fan if you will.  We became the target of online activities that couldn't really be traced back to anybody. But that were borderline bullying. 

 

Caption: Fillippo

Marchino is some STUPID IGNORANT WETBACK

 

10:18:20

 

VO: 

Suddenly webpages were created blackmailing Fillippo’s client and threatening him if he didn’t take down AshleyMadisonSucks.com. 

 

False Things were written about Fillippo, his client,

family members and even his employees.  Anonymous emails were sent with further threats and untrue allegations: one suggested that Fillippo’s client had HIV. 

 

 Fillippo

 10:18:43

 

Fillippo: 

We were never actually able to trace back who these

emails were coming from but it all started occurring

right at the same time. It seemed to be a coordinated attack from to dissuade my client from proceeding with what he was doing. 

 

Los Angeles Panorama

10:19:03 

 

VO:    

In a separate effort to get the site shut down, Noel Biderman offered the owner of AshleyMadisonSucks.com money for the IP address. He repeated his demands in a phone call recorded by the owner and in the presence of two witnesses…


 

 Los Angeles Panorama

10:19:17

 

Phone call:

Noel Biderman:

“Give me the URL back… I offered you ten grand, you’re being an ass. “

 

Owner of AshleyMadisonSucks.com:

I’m being a schmuck…. You sent an email to

my girlfriend.”

 

Noel Biderman: 

You have no idea. Yeah just wait

for the world of hurt I will bring on you. Just wait. 

 

 Fillippo

10:19:29

 

 Fillippo: 

I found out on the news that they'd been hacked and

all their information had been dumped. I was very surprised to find out that some documents which had been exchanged between us and them which otherwise should have been confidential, were now public domain.

 

 Los Angeles Panorama

 

10:19:47

 

Phone call: 

Owner of AshleyMadisonSucks.com:

“You email my girlfriend and tell her that you’re

putting up a site about her and she may have HIV.”

 

Noel Biderman:

 I’m going to do so much worse to

you…. You’re messing with my livelihood… you choose to be an ass. I’m being one back… but I can be ten times worse. I have way more resources than you. Y have 24 hours my friend. I’m going to drag you through the mud. “

 

 

 

10:20:09

 

 VO:

The first dump of information by the Impact team of hackers revealed information about many users of the site…  but the hack didn’t end there. 

 

 Gina

10:20:17

 

Gina: 

It seemed on the surface to be cut and dry, here is a company, it's been hacked. Here are all the victims.

…. There's the story the end. It should have blown over, but it didn't. 

 

 VO

10:20:29

 

VO: 

What came then took the hack to the next level.


 

 Joseph

 10:22:33

Joseph:

Plenty of data breeches take customer data, emails addresses, passwords maybe some other customer information and depending on the website that can be relatively easy. But to get emails, product source- code, internal documents, the hacker really has to take several more steps and really penetrate a company’s network 

 

 

10:20:54

 

 VO:

The second dump of information related to the

company and the CEO himself.

 

 Gina

10:21:00

 

Gina: 

There was so much email. I mean it was every email from 2011, 2012 all the way till June 2015. A lot of email. I'm totally guessing here but what it looked like somebody had thrown a USB stick in someone’s computers and just dragged over email files. I

looked less like a hack than a copy. 

 

 

10:21:22

 

Joseph: 

Not all data breaches become public, I mean probably most of them don't become public. But the fact that anybody can log on to a website on the so called dark web, download this data and see it for themselves... I mean that's appealing.

 

 

10:21:36

 

Gina:  

I start looking through the emails because... I was interested in seeing if I could figure out who would do it. …. I wanted to figure out who did it. 

Well, then I became an addict.

 

 

10:21:52

 

VO:

But as Gina, the editor of ANewDomain.com, looked

through the emails more questions came up. 

 

 

10:21:58

 

Gina:    

Soon I was just looking in the email trying to figure

out, what was Ashley Madison? Was it really a dating site?  It didn't appear so. 

 

 

10:22:08

 

VO:

Avid Life Media – the parent company of Ashley Madison, and headed by Noel Biderman owned a lot of different websites through many different shell companies. Some of these like Established Men and Cougar Life - were publicly part of the portfolio, and some of them weren’t so obviously linked to

Avid Life Media.  

 

 

10:22:26

Gina:  

It isn't one dating site, it's many sites in every major market in the world. It's really a sprawling business and a sprawling collection of websites that appear to be designed to get people to come in to do other stuff. And that stuff doesn't seem to have a lot to do with dating.  


 

 FD Websites:

Cheaters.net,

Praecellens Ltd,

Avid Life Media Inc.

1999-2016,

Meechee Established Men Inc.,

Avid Life Media 2008-2016,

The Big And The Beautiful,

Cougar Life – Avid Life Media Inc. – 2008-2016

  Date Mrs Robinson,

  Avid Life Media Inc., 

Cougar Life: 2008-

2016,

 

10:22:48

 

  VO:

The company owned websites that seemed to cater for every conceivable male fantasy. Each one was slick and targeted at a specific market

 

FD

Cougarlife: Avid

Life Media Inc.,

2008-2016

Broke College Girls EM Media Inc.,

Avid Life Media

Inc - 2008-2016

EROCITY Dating Factory,

Avid Life Media

2014,

Downlow,

Avid Dating Life Inc.,

Ashley Madison

Inc.,

2009-2016

 

10:25:58

 

Gina:

So yes there's married women that will have an

affair with you, that's Ashley Madison. There's older women who will have an affair with younger guys - that's Cougar Life. Broke College Girls, find a broke college girl and maybe you could be her sugar daddy. There's that site. There's bondage sites, there's gay sites, if you can find a male fantasy, there's a site for it. 

 

 

 

10:23:22

 

VO:

All the websites had one aim: to draw in male customers. 

 

 Tasmin

10:23:30

VO:

Ashley Madison user Tamsin could see how people got drawn onto other websites.


 

 Tasmin

 

10:23:34

 

Tasmin:

I think it’s become a sort of a gateway drug, if you will, for relationships and websites, and Internet dating of this sort, that it’s a good area and a good site for people to …get their feet wet, and then once they're there, then the banners for the more sort of directed websites pop up.

 

 

FD EM Website: EM Media Inc., Avid Life Media Inc.

- 2008-2016

 

10:23:56

 

VO:

One of Avid Life’s most popular websites was Established Men. It claims to be the premier online dating service that connects young, beautiful women with rich, successful men!”

 

The website makes it clear women cannot advertise

their services as an escort – however many female users are looking “for a mutually beneficial arrangement”, an MBA… a common online term for a relationship often involving money.  

 

 Tasmin

10:24:25

 

Tasmin:

A lot of times women are looking for arrangements because they're having difficulty making ends meet. And a lot of times men are not in a position to have a formal relationship with all the bells and whistles and responsibilities that go along with it. 

 

 

 

 

 Tasmin

10:24:41

 

VO:

Marketing Consultant Tamsin has lived an arrangement lifestyle on and off since she was 19. 

 

 

 Tasmin

10:24:46

 

Tasmin:

This is more of a situation where the man provides the woman with an allowance, spoiling, takes care of her travel expenses. Enables her basically to be able to be on his schedule on an as needed basis.

 

 Tasmin

10:25: 01

 

VO:

Like the term sugar-daddy, a mutually beneficial arrangement, is a relationship where men and women negotiate the terms. 

 

 

 Gina

10:25:09

 

Gina: 

A lot of those are escorts. Some of them just boldly say "escort". But escort services are illegal in the US outside of a couple of areas so you can't really come out and say :"Hey, I’m a hooker!" you know, it's illegal. 


 

FD

ARRANGEMENT FINDERS website, EM Media Inc -

Avid Life Media Inc

- Arrangement

Finders 2008-2016

 

10:25:28

 

VO:

Avid Life Media also owns ArrangementFinders.com, a more blatantly erotic website. Even though the website states that it doesn’t allow

escorts to use their service, they actively encouraged

girls who would like some extra income through dating to join. 

 

 FD: “Bubbles Arrangement Finders AD”  - Marc Morgenstern, Avid Life Media Inc., 2014

10:25:44

 

Kayden:

Start dating the way evolution programmed you too- and we can ship bubbles right to you.

 

FD: “Bubbles Arrangement Finders AD”  - Marc Morgenstern, Avid Life Media Inc., 2014

 

10:25:48

 

VO  

They created another tongue-in-cheek marketing

campaign, this time with the porn star Kayden Kross as the face of the brand. 

 

 FD: “Bubbles Arrangement Finders AD”  - Marc Morgenstern, Avid Life Media Inc., 2014

10:25:55

 

Kayden:

We’re not just creating arrangements, we are also creating new jobs. 

Bubbles what were you doing last month?

B: No jobs.

K: What are you doing this month

B: Blow jobs. 

 

FD Deal News Clip:  “KTLA News”: Stefan Chase – KTLA TV - 2013

10:26:02

 

VO:

When they deliberately advertised outside a university they made the news again. People were stunned. 

 

FD Deal News Clip:  “KTLA News”: Stefan Chase – KTLA TV - 2013

10:26:09

 

News reporter: 

I'm here along Santa Monica Boulevard near

Overland Avenue. A spokesperson for Avid Life Media said the placement and timing of the ad is part of the company’s strategy. With graduation right around the corner and students looking for jobs and money. When we asked if this was prostitution the spokesperson said, "No, it's intimacy with a twist."


 

Email

10:26:29

 

VO: 

But emails in the dump purporting to be from Noel Biderman’s inbox reveal that the company not only knew they hosted escorts, they actively sought them…. 

 

 Email

10:26:32

 

Email on screen reads:

From BLUR John Santoro

To Noel Biderman

 

Hey Noel, escorts are def joining AF. Is there a

way to let these profiles slide through the profile

approval process?  

 

 

 Email

10:26:40

 

VO:

In one case it appeared that 2,500 escorts were emailed enticing them to join Arrangement Finders… when it worked they planned to contact

45,000 more.  

 

 Email

10:26:44

 

Email on screen reads:

From BLUR John Santoro

To Noel Biderman

 

 2500 escort send is getting us some real escort

signups. Getting another list of 7k can get it up to

45k in total.

 

            

 

Email

10:26:53

VO: 

Some emails discussed the possibility of bringing foreign women to the US to work as ‘sugar babies’.

Email on screen reads:

We might be able to do this

semi-legit

 

 

 Email

10:27:02

 

VO: 

And how the company would market them…

 

Email on screen reads:

from Noel Biderman

-> from the PR side:

- it would be interesting to talk about x% in y months of AF female users being "temporary student workers and the highlight some sexy countries.

- in the digital marketing side i think that is your "ethnicity" play - "come see exchange students looking to stay in the USA

 

 Email

10:27:07

 

VO: 

They also investigated how the women could come to the US by lying to the authorities

 

 

 

 


 

 Email

 

Email on screen reads:

asked BLUR kayden how this happens bon the adult side, got the following:

 

The way foreign girls work in the US is they lie at customs about coming for vacation, then take a road trip out of Arizona, where the DMV there will give them a new ID. We can now hire anyone with at least one valid us ID. Once they're here, they can start working with a lawyer to get a work visa by essentially saying that they are necessary for the industry in the US. I actually just wrote a letter for one of the girls whose lawyer was gathering documents for her work visa case. I do know that us pairs really do a shit tom this way ... Often they stay illegally in the US after their au pair jobs expire.

 

 

FD Porn Film:  “Screwing Wall Street” Manuel Ferrara/Kayden Kross - Dirty Monkey Inc., Avid Life Media Inc, 2015

 

10:27:17

VO:

ArrangementFinders.com is one of Avid Life’s most successful sites. 

 

FD Porn Film:  “Screwing Wall Street” Manuel Ferrara/Kayden Kross - Dirty Monkey Inc., Avid Life Media Inc, 2015

10:27:22

 

VO:

And it was to take Noel Biderman and Avid Life

Media in a new direction: movies.  He experimented with product placement and an unknown starlet. It just happened to be in hardcore porn…

 

NB  Zombie AD: “Zombie”

Marc Morgenstern

– Avid Life Media -

2013

 

10:27:37

 

VO:

The site, famous for facilitating adultery, is also known for its shocking, deliberately provocative marketing stunts.

 

This ad from 2013 featuring zombie husbands and wives was banned – buying the company even more free publicity.

 


 

AD

10:27:50

Voice:

Bringing your marriage back to life.

AF: “Bubbles Arrangement Finders AD”  - Marc Morgenstern, Avid Life Media Inc., 2014

 

10:27:52

 

VO:

But the owners of Ashley Madison, Avid Life Media, have a loose definition of dating.  In their deliberatly lo fi styled advert for arrangement finders.com Kayden Kross face of the brand explains what they do

 

 

 

AF: “Bubbles Arrangement Finders AD”  - Marc Morgenstern, Avid Life Media Inc., 2014

10:27:57

 

 Kayden :

It’s so simple a caveman could use it

 

AF: “Bubbles Arrangement Finders AD”  - Marc Morgenstern, Avid Life Media Inc., 2014

 

10:27:59

VO:

In their deliberately lo-fi styled advert for ArrangementFinders.com Kayden Kross, the face of the brand, explains what they do

 AF: “Bubbles Arrangement Finders AD”  - Marc Morgenstern, Avid Life Media Inc., 2014

10:28:07

 

 Kayden :

It’s a dating site for all you sexy silver backs out there who think it’s time for a little arm candy. And for all you arm candy to get a bit of purse candy. Are these dating options any good you ask? No. But blowjobs are f**king great.

 

 FD website – shorten

EM Media Inc - Avid Life Media Inc - Arrangement Finders 2008-2016

 

 10:28:22

 

VO:

The company has denied this is prostitution, but rather “intimacy with a twist. “

•           

 

 

FD Image of DVD Cover:  “Screwing Wall Street” Manuel Ferrara/Kayden Kross - Dirty Monkey Inc., Avid Life Media Inc, 2015

10:28:27

 

VO:

ArrangementFinders.com is interesting for an additional reason: this is the website that took the CEO Noel Biderman: and his team into the world of pornography. 

 

Caption:

Las Vegas, USA 

 

Veronica owns those pics. 

 

10:28:44

 

Veronica:  

I took some photos of myself in a state of undress in

a bank on wall street. And then the photos went viral. The bathroom was not a public it was a private bathroom and I used to take pictures in there when I was bored anyway just cause I’m a millennial and we do things like that…. and within days, literally days, they went completely viral over the Internet. And I was dubbed "the wall street porn star" before I even decided if I want to do porn or not. But at that point I was committed right?


 

FD Porn: Add sounds: “Screwing Wall Street”, Manuel

Ferrara/Kayden Kross - Dirty Monkey Inc., Avid Life Media Inc.,

2015

10:29:23

Manuel:

You’ve got that Ashley Madison investment right?

 

FD Porn: Add sounds: “Screwing Wall Street”, Manuel

Ferrara/Kayden Kross - Dirty Monkey Inc., Avid Life Media Inc.,

2015

10:29:25

Veronica:

Yeah, and we ‘re working on some other interesting stuff.

FD Porn: Add sounds: “Screwing Wall Street”, Manuel

Ferrara/Kayden Kross - Dirty Monkey Inc., Avid Life Media Inc.,

2015

 

10:29:29

 

VO: 

Veronica Vain would become Noel Biderman’s leading lady…Screwing Wall Street – the Arrangement Finders IPO was the first fully-branded porn film, full of not-so-subtle product placement.

 

Veronica was offered the lead part as her porn

debut. The story was a spoof of the original

Hollywood film “Wall Street”. 

 

 FD Porn: Add sounds: “Screwing Wall Street”, Manuel

Ferrara/Kayden Kross - Dirty Monkey Inc., Avid Life Media Inc.,

2015

10:29:50

 

Manuel:

You wanna work with me?

 

 Veronica

10:29:52

 

Veronica:

The reason I was really interested in this deal - I knew that it was pretty groundbreaking what they were doing. Even if it wasn't necessarily the best way to go about it at the time, the fact that they were doing it and that they were a mainstream brand...  

 

FD Porn: Add sounds: “Screwing Wall Street”, Manuel

Ferrara/Kayden Kross - Dirty Monkey Inc., Avid Life Media Inc.,

2015

 

10:30:05

 

Manuel:

You were good enough to get in my office.  Let’s see it you’re good enough to stay.

 

 Veronica

10:30:12

 

Veronica:

That movie wasn't really the gold mine for him, he wasn't just looking for his brand to be in porn. Just the fact that it was my name and I was this girl who was being portrayed as being young and cute and having a good head on her shoulders 

I was the girl he wanted to sell to all these guys. 

 

Veronica

10:30:32 

 

VO:

The plan worked very well. The clips that were released for free have had over three million views but it was Veronica’s association with the brand and appearances on legitimate news channels that really had an effect. 

 

 Veronica

10:30:43

 

Veronica:

I always wanted to do something more entrepreneurial with my career I knew I wasn’t fit for a more conservative environment and I saw an industry that’s undergoing a new wave of innovation and I really wanted to be a part of it. 


 

 Veronica

10:30:53

 

The site had 200% increase in overall web traffic but more impressively a 400% increase in signups. 

 

Which I think it's basically saying that if you were going to Arrangement Finders as a result of seeing me in this clip or in the media or something you're almost immediately converting into a member. 

 

Still: Reuters

 

10:31:15

 

Veronica:

It was another major marketing success for Noel Biderman. 

 

 Veronica:

10:31:18

Interviewer:

Why do you think Noel was so clever at this?

 

 Veronica:

10:31:21

Veronica:

Speaking as an entrepreneur myself most entrepreneurs when they come up with an idea it’s because they saw a market need for something that they needed. They won't be like "oh 

People need this but I don’t really want it" most entrepreneurs when they start something they want the product that's why they are making it.

So I can only imagine that he might have wanted to have some sort of affair, or make it easier to have an affair. And that’s quite brilliant that he went to the market being like I don't have affair I’m happily married blah blah I just like start this for other guys

 

Archive: ABC The View

 

10:31:52

 

 TV Host:

If your husband was cheating on you would you be OK with him going to a site such as yours?

 

 Archive: ABC The View

10:31:58

 

Noel's wife: 

Absolutely not, that's not what I signed up for .

 

 Archive: ABC The View

10:32:01

 

VO:

Noel was the master of press interviews. He often included his wife in the discussion…

 

Archive: ABC The View

10:32:05

Noel's wife: 

…and I live in  a traditional situation with Noel and we…

Archive: ABC The View

10:32:09

VO:

…and he was always clear: he had never had an extra-marital affair. 

 

 Archive: ABC The View

10:32:14

Noel's wife: 

And I would be devastated if he did this to me.

 


 

Still: Stella Pics

 

10:32:16

 

VO:

 But information released in the Ashley Madison

hack revealed that Noel did have affairs, in fact, it appeared that over three years he had had relationships with a number of women, many of whom he had met through his own site, Established Men…. 

 

Email

 

10:32:27

Email on screen:  

OK I booked at Bond Hotel downtown, I’ll let you

know when I leave...

 

Email on screen:  

Date: 11 june 2013

From : Noel Biderman

To: Blur (Jasbe_ytzn@hotmail.com)

Subject: <No Subject>

When Can we meet up? … What about tonight?  

 

From Blur (Jasbe_ytzn@hotmail.com)

To Noel Biderman

 

 

 Email

10:35:36

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

10:32:31

 

Email on screen:  

Date: 8 April 2013

From Noel Biderman

To BLUR (Ms _Emma099@yahoo.ca)

Subject: Noel from EM

 

I am looking for someone young, fun and kind to meet once a month…

 

From: BLUR (Ms _Emma099@yahoo.ca)

To Noel

 

If it’s once a month I guess I could come to

Toronto…  

What kind of allowance are you willing to spend?  

 

 

VO:

Noel frequently discussed money with these women and even offered one work at Avid Life.

 He appears to have been a serial “sugar daddy” himself. 

 It seems that very little of the Ashley Madison story was as it appeared. 


 

 Email

10:35:43

 

Email on screen:  

Date: 7 May 2012

From: Noel Biderman

To Sofia@Sofieescort.com

 

Subject: At the Ritz Hotel

Interested in 18-19 year olds – do you have one available right now?  

….

 

Send me 2 girls and I will choose 1.

 

 Email

10:35:50

Email on screen:  

Date: 18 November 2014

From: escorts Chile@gmail.com

To Noel Biderman

 

Anna charges $400 per hour and she will be

available tomorrow.

 

 

 

Still: Reuters

 

10:32:46

VO:

It’s hard to know if the mainstream media would have given Noel and his company quite so much airtime if they’d known all that was happening behind the scenes…

 

 Gina

10:32:55

Gina   

I don't think Ashley Madison is inventing prostitution. I think what the emails suggest they're doing is helping to automate it.  And making it very easy. Just like google didn't invent looking stuff up. To my knowledge, Ashley Madison, they're not running a prostitution ring or their own escort service that's against the law or anything like that. …. What I find more immoral is about the way they deal with reporters and journalists, misleading them into thinking that the company is something that it isn't. But that's not illegal either. Because they're a private company and they can tell people anything they want to about

their business. 

 

 Louise

10:33:26

Louise:

I think Ashley Madison were brilliant at marketing – they seemed to know what the papers wanted. And they would take this little seed of truth, blow it up and that was probably what made them so successful in the media. 

 

Archive: This morning  - ITV

10:33:49

Louise:

You need to get a little bit more with times, and to be honest…


 

Archive: This morning  - ITV

10:33:51

VO:

Louise Van der Veld is a professional sex and relationship counselor. She was employed by Ashley Madison as a media spokesperson in 2013, although she soon fell out with the company over

money. She did get an insight into how the company worked. 

Archive: This morning  - ITV

10:34:06

Louise:

…because the relationship model is fundamentally flawed

from the off.

 Louise

10:34:10

Louise:

When I first agreed to be their spokesperson, it was very much me coming from an authentic point of view, about my beliefs about my experience of working with couples who had affairs. A lot of that kind of got ditched and they totally glamorized it with a shocking headline approach. 

 

VO

10:34:27

VO:

And the hacked emails revealed not just exaggeration, but deliberate deception of the media.

 

 Email

10:34:28

Email on screen:  

 

Date: 12. January 2015

From BLUR Rizwan.jwan@avidmedialife.com

To Noel Biderman

Subject: Forbes data

 

Perfect. I provided everything that is in there

except the survey data which is by and large

made up by PR.

 

 Email

 10:34:34

Email on screen:  

Date: 30 July 2012

From: BLUR Shari.cogan@avidlifemedia.com

To: binu.koshy@avidlifemedia.com

CC: Noel Biderman

Subject: CougarLife update

 

If nightline smells anything suspicious they will

kill the whole thing.... Prep work and coaching of

the couple as it needs to feel genuine... And they need to have back stories(how long they have been together ... -emails, phone calls etc.) 

 

 

 Email

10:34:43

VO:

Even blue chip publications fell for their stories.

 


 

 Gina

10:34:47

Gina: 

Forbes is one of the world’s largest financial publications, it's one of the most respected financial publications in the world. 

 

 VO

10:34:54

VO:

Noel and Avid Life Media were cultivating a

relationship with a journalist who was trying to get a piece commissioned by the magazine. 

 

 Email

 10:34:54

Email on screen:  

Date: 2December 2014 From BLUR: Adam tanner To Noel Biderman

Subject: Possible Forbes print article

 

I talked to the Forbes editor about a print story

on Ashley Madison...

 

What I would need to make the case are some

more revenue and profit numbers going back

some years... Can you send a chart or spreadsheet?

 

 Gina

10:35:03

Gina:

Forbes editors had agreed to do an article about them and their fantastic growth but they wanted to see some numbers.  And from the trail of emails you see employees saying, woah I can do up this chart and I can make up this set of data points and a lot of it seems to be largely invented. 

 

 Email

10:35:25

Email on screen:  

Date: 2 December 2014

From BLUR rizwan.jiwan@avidlifemedia.com

To: Noel Biderman

Subject: Possible Forbes Print Article

 

Tried to make more aggressive numbers but it

really looks suspect if it grows by 1000%in a short period of time.  

 

I can't grow it more aggressively in the past of

the historic numbers will be super crazy.  

 

VO

10:35:26

VO:

The company appears to have dramatically exaggerated the financial figures for the Ashley Madison website .  

 

 Gina

10:35:33

Gina:  

All those websites, all those affiliate marketing deals. All the many different little revenue streams that Ashley Madison and Avid and it's related companies have all over the world. But how could Forbes have known about all of that? And back then nobody did.  

 


 

Archive : The Artie Lang Show

10:35:50

VO:

Noel’s dream was for Ashely Madison to be listed

on the stock market and sell its shares to the public through what’s called an IPO.

 

 Archive : The Artie Lang Show

10:35:59

Noel Biderman: 

We're a huge company - maybe you can help us with the IPO, I think it's about time we go and raise a billion bucks and show the world. It could happen. If you looked at our business with a blind on it right? ... You just looked at the numbers and the growth and the membership and you go oh my god this thing is worth billions I wanna invest in it. 

 

 

 Archive : The Artie Lang Show

10:36:13

VO:

Noel wanted everyone to look at the business through a filter. To cover the entire empire of sex sites, porn affiliates and escort listings with the blanket of Ashley Madison.

 

 Veronica

10:36:23

Veronica:

Because Noel was so good at making it look mainstream and OK, and commonplace and OK to talk about , I think people were more likely to be able to talk openly about AshleyMadison.com than they are about pornhub.com .

 

 

C/U Gina

 

 

 

Archiv: Prelinger: B&W vintage shots

10:36:37

 

 

 

 

Gina:  

So if Forbes comes out and says wow! Ashley Madison is one of the largest, most successful dating sites in history, it's nearly a billion-dollar company then 8 other major publications the world over will say, wow! Forbes, Bloomberg, it must be true. I mean with nobody really questioning - could this really be a billion-dollar company? Is it really going public? 45% growth in one year really? 

 

You really can’t blame Ashley Madison for taking advantage of a lazy press. 

 

 VO

10:37:09

VO:

In September 2015, two months after the hack, another Forbes article was written:  “we really don’t know how big Ashley Madison was, although I’m pretty sure... that it was nowhere near as big as it seemed.”


 

 

 

 

Archive: Toronto Police

10:37:23

VO:

But while the hack appears to have revealed so much about the users and owners of the website, we know very little about the hackers themselves. A year later no one has been arrested for the crime and the case is still ongoing. 

           

 

 Archive: Toronto Police

10:27:36

Police:

Avid Life Media is offering a $500k reward to anyone providing information that leads to the identification, arrest and prosecution of the person or persons responsible for the leak of the Ashley Madison database .

           

 

Archive : Perlinger: Sepia

Vintage Shot

10:37:51

VO:

And no one has collected that half a million-dollar reward...

 

Man:

Standby.

 

TEXT CARD

 

Archive : Perlinger: B&W Wedding

10:37:56

 Voice:

Good looking, healthy, certainly old enough to get married what a lovely picture this bride and groom make each is a dream in the others mind.

 

 

10:38:07

VO:

Many marriages were rocked when the user details of AshleyMadison.com were leaked last year. Divorce lawyers claimed it was

Christmas in September” for the industry.

 

10:38:17

Voice:

 Why does it have to happen this way for them? Whose fault was it?  

 

Archive: Naked News

10:38:25

VO:

The dating industry was also rocked. Shortly after the hacked emails of Noel Biderman were published, Avid Life Media announced that he had agreed to step down as CEO. They said this was in the best interests of the company.

Archive: Toronto Police

10:38:39

Police:

Team Impact, this is your wake up call. Your actions are illegal and will not be tolerated…

 

10:38:46

VO:

But the police still have no idea who did it. 

 


 

 

10:38:50

The hackers called themselves the Impact team, an anonymous-style group who called the users of Ashley Madison “cheating dirtbags” and accused Avid life of “profiting from the pain of others”. This kind of hack is known as “hacktivism.”

Caption:  

Manchester, England

10:39:10

VO:

Hacker house” near Manchester, is filled with

people who know that world.

Caption:

Lauri Love Chief Hacking Officer Hacker House 

 

10:39:17

Lauri Love: 

If you understand the rules of somebody else's system better than them they do, then you effectively get to rewrite the rules of the game

 

10:39:25

Hacker 2:

Trying to take down a website that promotes unfaithfulness between couples. It could be considered vigilantism.

 

Caption:

Jennifer Arcuri Founder, Hacker House

 

10:39:32

Jen:

Is it ok to cheat on your wife? Because you can do it behind closed doors on this website, and then what happens when that is exposed? Are we all now supposed to feel sorry for you?

 

10:39:41

Hacker 2:

I personally would never do anything illegal, but when the Ashley Madison thing happened it was like yeah good on them!

 

10:39:49

Hacker 2:

A lot of big hacktivists, I mean this is what they go for, they try to expose big corporate companies. The means of going in and shutting down some other site, it’s still breaking the law. 

 

10:40:01

Hacker:

 It’s getting serious and we’re seeing more of the effect it will have on people’s lives

 

10:40:09

VO:

Hacker House was set up to try and bring hackers into the mainstream and not to break the law. But the Impact team’s action was more than just illegal… 

Caption:

Joseph Cox

Journalist, Motherboard

 

10:40:18

Joseph:

Whether they thought the reason behind it was purely moral - only they can answer. But it’s not like this was a victimless crime – I mean people killed themselves


 

VO

10:40:30

VO:

We still have no idea who hacked Avid Life Media, and for what true motive. They didn’t appear to make money from the hack, so there must have been a different reason. Some people think it was a competitor…

Tasmin

10:40:42

Tasmin:

I'm of the belief that it was probably a competing website. That may have masterminded or saw the opportunity. May have planted an employee over a period of time. Or they were the ones that handled the hack externally.

Tasmin

10:41:00

VO:

One theory was that it was an inside job. 

 Joseph

10:41:03

Joseph: 

There is chance that the Impact team was just an insider. Judging by the quality and richness of the data. Internal email, product source code - they likely had to be

on the company network itself rather than just the website….

Christopher

10:41:23

Christopher: 

I believe that someone had a personal problem with the CEO or the executives at the company and felt cheated or, yeah, felt cheated in some way where they were getting revenge.

Louise

10:41:35

Louise:

Judging by the way that I was treated by the company and the way that they just seemed used to dealing with employees that were not happy I think it possibly was an inside job. 

 Gina

10:41:49

Gina:  

Lots of people could have had a motive to either harm either Avid in general or Noel specifically. People inside, people outside. This was a company that sued a lot of people, fired a lot of people. Finding a person with a

motive is too easy. There's too many people with motives

 

 Caption:

Idaho, USA

10:42:16

VO:

But whoever did it, the real world impact of Ashley Madison continues….


 

c/u JIM

 

Caption:

‘Jim’

 

 

‘Jim’

10:42:21

Jim:

Anybody who's been through what I’ve been through would love to see that site down.

 Jim

10:42:28

VO:

Long before the hack, Ashley Madison had been helping to destroy marriages. 

 

Many of the real women on the site were from rural areas

 Jim

10:42:36

Jim: 

When the hack happened you can actually go and see per area, Utah ,Idaho ... where they had some of the highest Ashley Madison accounts ... And these are conservative, rural areas. It’s something that actually is not very surprising to me.

 Jim

10:42:58

VO:

In 2012, several years before the hack, Jim received some messages on his phone. By accident one of his wife’s accounts was networked to his cell. 

 

 Jim

10:43:08

Jim:

I started getting emails and text messages between my wife and another guy telling him I’m gonna start a fight with my husband and figure out some way to go meet up with you

 

I threw up. I actually threw up. 

 

 Jim

10:43:27

VO:

In the end Jim was able to recover many of the messages his wife had sent.

 Jim

10:43:31

Jim:

Stuff you can never un-know, you can never un-see … even have a video. Someone sent me a video, it was her having sex.

 Jim

10:43:41

VO:

Jim discovered that his wife had had affairs with six different men on the Ashley Madison website

 

10:43:47

Jim:  

It’s like a drug, it’s like you’re addicted. You want more, you want that adrenaline, you want that feeling. That’s the only way I can think of it.


 

 Jim

10:43:58

Jim:

I have these 5 little kids. I did not want them to be raised in a broken home, I felt like it was my fault, I felt responsible. I just tried talking to her and explaining - I love you, we have 5 kids, let's not destroy this family. 

 VO

10:44:24

VO:

But in the end it was impossible to reconcile: the couple divorced.

 Jim

10:44:30

Jim:

It took a long time before I stopped getting nauseous, like physically wanted to throw up. Any time I saw Ashley Madison. Until the hack. That was a good day.   

 VO

10:44:50

VO:

We don’t know who did the hack, but we do know that The Impact team has threatened to do more attacks

 Joseph

10:44:58

Joseph: 

I asked the Impact team whether they were going to hit any other companies and they said, essentially, sure. Maybe even politicians… 

 

 Joseph

10:45:08

Jyson: 

All systems have weaknesses. Even the biggest social networking site. There's no such thing as a secure system. 

 Joseph

10:45:22

Joseph: 

As more of our lives become intertwined with the digital world, cars having connection to the internet for example, hacking is only going to increase.

VO

10:45:33

Interviewer:

Is that scary?

 Joseph

10:45:36

Joseph:  

Yeah!

 

 VO

10:45:38

Anonymous

Greeting citizens of the free world. Our freedom is once again under attack. This cannot continue!

 

Text Card

10:45:45

Text:

We asked Noel Biderman for his response to the issues the issues raised in this film but received no response.

 

In this film but received no response.


 

Text Card

10:45:49

Text:

In July 2016 Avid Life Media re-branded as ‘Ruby’ and appointed a new CEO and President.

 It apologised to those affected by the hack and says it’s been investing heavily to deal with evolving cyber threats.

 Reportedly they are cooperating with a US Federal Trade Commission investigation and say that they are no longer using bots on their sites.

 

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