John Suayan Aug. 26, 2015, 9:30am


The company behind the Ashley Madison online dating website is the target of a class action federal lawsuit alleging a breach in its security system.

According to the lawsuit, which was filed Aug. 21 in the Dallas Division of the Northern District of Texas, the unidentified plaintiff explains that the breach in question to defendant Avid Life Media, Inc.’s databases last month resulted in compromised security of his and class members’ personal, financial, and other information.

“On or about July 15 of this year, and at times prior, ALM’s databases were compromised, with the result that personal information of plaintiff and class members’ personal information was used or is at risk of use in fraudulent transactions around the world, as well as other invidious exposure,” the complaint says.

Ashley Madison, which the suit shows to have nearly 37 million subscribers, was set up to provide “confidentiality and anonymity,” mainly to married individuals seeking to have affairs.

Court documents argue that the plaintiff and class members’ personal information was released to the public and published on several sites on Aug. 18. A few days later, additional personal information was allegedly leaked.

“Despite being told that it could prevent the release of personal information of plaintiff and class members, defendants allowed such personal information to be released to the public and did not notify plaintiff and class members about the threat of the release of personal information or the actual release of personal information,” the original petition says.

It adds the respondent was provided with personal information in order to effectuate a “paid-delete” of any of the complainant and class members’ personal information, stating the amount of personal information increased because the former retained personal information related to the “paid-delete” transaction itself.

“Plaintiff and class members are subject to continuing damage from having their personal information comprised as a result of defendant’s inadequate systems and failures,” the suit says.

Consequently, the complaint seeks unspecified damages and a jury trial.

Attorney John T. Kirtley, III of the law firm Ferrer Poirot & Wansbrough in Dallas is representing the plaintiff and class members.

Dallas Division of the Northern District of Texas Case No. 3:15-CV-2750

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