They say it’s lonely at the top. Exactly how lonely? One possible barometer is the number of email addresses registered to the White House that were discovered in a data dump of the hacked marital- infidelity website Ashley Madison.
According to a report at The Hill, email addresses associated with top federal agencies and branches of the military were also found in the dump. All told, there were over 15,000 such addresses.
The detailed data, released Tuesday, will likely put Washington, D.C., on edge. The nation’s capital reportedly has the highest rate of membership for the site of any city.
Buried in the list [of addresses exposed] are emails that could be tied to multiple administration agencies, including the State Department and Department of Homeland Security, as well as several tied to both the House and Senate.
For a month, hackers using the name “Impact Team” have been holding hostage the dating profiles of those who registered on the site. The group threatened to publicly out the potential adulterers if the site’s owner, Avid Life Media, didn’t take down Ashley Madison, which uses the tagline, “Life is short. Have an affair.”
David Kennedy, CEO of TrustedSec, an information security company that monitors cyber attacks, wrote in a blog post:
The database dump appears to be legitimate and contains usernames, passwords, credit card data (last four), street addresses, full names, and much much more. It also contains an extensive amount of internal data which looks like the hackers had maintained access to their environment for a long period of time.
“This dump appears to be legit,” Kennedy added, emphasizing “Very, very legit.”
It is likely that many, although not all, of the government email accounts were faked. Several emails, for example, are registered at “whitehouse.gov,” which is bogus since White House officials use “eop.gov” for email communications.