Following the major hack to its system, Ashley Madison is offering its $19 full delete feature for free, as the company ensures users it does completely erase their profile.
The feature was one of the main reasons the hackers decided to attack the extramarital dating site, and threaten to expose the personal information, and sexual fantasies, of its 37m users.
In their manifesto, the hackers – called the Impact Team – said the feature was a “complete lie”, and didn’t actually remove all traces of a customer’s usage, as Ashley Madison claimed.
The attackers said: “Users almost always pay with credit card; their purchase details are not removed as promised, and include real name and address, which is of course the most important information the users want removed.”
They also claimed the feature made Avid Life Media $1.7m in revenue in 2014.
However in a new statement, Ashley Madison’s parent company, Avid Life Media, reiterated their stance that the feature does completely remove a user’s details, saying:
“Contrary to current media reports, and based on accusations posted online by a cyber criminal, the “paid-delete” option offered by AshleyMadison.com does in fact remove all information related to a member’s profile and communications activity.
“The process involves a hard-delete of a requesting user’s profile, including the removal of posted pictures and all messages sent to other system users’ email boxes. This option was developed due to specific member requests for just such a service, and designed based on their feedback.”
And the company is now letting Ashley Madison customers use the full delete option – which previously cost £15 in the UK, and $19 in the US – for free.
Avid Life Media said: “As our customers’ privacy is of the utmost concern to us, we are now offering our full-delete option free to any member, in light of today’s news.”
Read more about the breach here, and read this embarrassing email Ashley Madison sent last year, in which it boasted about its security system.