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Ashley Madison offers $380K reward in bid to catch hackers

As the Ashley Madison hackers slip back into the shadows, the Canadian company at the center of the incident has offered a CDN$500,000 (about $380,000) reward for information leading to the arrest of the perpetrators.

Toronto-based Avid Life Media, which operates a number of sites alongside Ashley Madison, announced the reward on Monday as news broke of two suicides that may have resulted from last week’s massive leak of members’ personal information.

Speaking at a news conference, acting staff superintendent Bryce Evans of the Toronto police, said, “Today, I can confirm that Avid Life Media is offering a CDN$500,000 reward to anyone providing information that leads to the identification, arrest, and prosecution of the person or persons responsible for the leak of the Ashley Madison database.”

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Directly addressing those responsible, Evans said, “I want to make it very clear to you your actions are illegal and we will not be tolerating them. This is your wake-up call.”

The BBC said that Toronto police also warned Web users to be wary of “spin-off crimes” involving online scams connected to the Ashley Madison hack, adding that such incidents were already being reported.

“The public needs to be aware that by clicking on these links [in emails] you are exposing your computers to malware, spyware, adware, and viruses,” Evans said.

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Avid Life Media hopes its sizable reward will tempt members of the hacking community with inside information on the massive security breach to contact cops and help bring those responsible to justice.

But to the company’s dismay, the fallout from the hack shows no sign of abating. Besides the news of two suicides possibly related to the incident, Avid Life Media is also facing a number of class action lawsuits as it attempts to hold its badly damaged business together.