Study which ties Ashley Madison accounts to local areas questioned

By Chris Pugh - [email protected]

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Ashley Madison

According to one study, a worldwide hack of a paid dating web site which markets its services to married people looking to have affairs is showing that the site was visited by various people in the north central Ohio area.

After the hack was made public last week, Tecnilógica, a research firm based in Madrid, Spain, broke the results down to geographical areas throughout the world.

Its research looked at north central Ohio areas, but the findings should be taken with a grain of salt.

The data does have its critics along with others who question the accuracy of the accounts in the leaked database.

According to the research, here are the number of residents in each community with Ashley Madison accounts (the community’s population as of the 2010 census is in parentheses).

Bucyrus – 746 (12,362)

Galion – 648 (10,512)

Mount Gilead – 503 (3,660)

Cardington – 243 (2,047)

Gambier – 78 (2,391)

Tiro – 22 (280)

Another strike against this survey was that not all areas were listed in the interactive maps,

For example, Bellville and Fredericktown weren’t mentioned at all, while the only mention of Mansfield was East Mansfield, which was listed as 20 users.

The group explained its methods on a blog post:

“From the filtered data collecting of the dating service (30 million users), the first step was to remove sensitive data from the database (name, address, email, etc.). The reason for this is twofold: first, we downsize the size of the data to operate with, and on the other, we protect the privacy of the users. The remaining data contains the user gender, the sign-up date, and the city where they are located. Thus, it is impossible to connect a point on the map with a particular user. Also, we deleted the data from users living in little ‘lifeless’ cities to avoid the effect “we caught you because you are the only user from Boreland-upon-Nowhere.”

You can view the entire report here.

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By Chris Pugh

[email protected]