Ashley Madison’s failure to protect the adulterous secrets of its users has resulted in a lawsuit eclipsing more than half a billion dollars.

Reports ABC News:

Two Canadian law firms have filed a $578 million class-action lawsuit against the companies that run Ashley Madison after a hacker group’s data breach exposed some 39 million memberships in the adultery website earlier this week.

Charney Lawyers and Sutts, Strosberg LLP, both of Ontario, said Friday that they filed the lawsuit on behalf of Canadians who subscribed to Ashley Madison and whose personal information was disclosed to the public. The website, with its slogan “Life is short. Have an affair,” is marketed to facilitate extramarital relationships.

The lawsuit, filed Thursday in the Ontario Superior Court of Justice, targets Avid Dating Life Inc. and Avid Life Media Inc., the Toronto-based companies that run AshleyMadison.com. Its class-action status “still needs to be certified by the court,” the statement says.

Ashley Madison did not immediately respond to requests for comment. It has said that the personal details exposed in the initial data leak can’t be used to prove the infidelity of their clients.

The plaintiff is Eliot Shore, an Ottawa widower. Shore said he joined the website for a short time in search of companionship after he lost his wife to breast cancer. He said he never cheated and never met up with any members of the site.

Lawyer Ted Charney told The Associated Press it is the first class-action suit filed against the companies in Canada.

The most famous name to emerge from the Ashley Madison breach so far is embattled 19 Kids and Counting star, Josh Duggar.


Photo: Ashley Madison

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