The recent Ashley Madison Hack did not only produce heartbreak and embarrassment, but it also gave us data. Weird, sad data.
And since we aren’t naming names, no matter how nicely you ask, we’re instead left to paint our constituent communities with the broad brush reserved for private conversation.
Ashley Madison, if you didn’t know, was ostensibly a dating site for people in search of extra-marital affairs. Recently it was hacked, and those hackers released all kinds of company records including member lists, credit card transactions, and company emails.
The credit card transaction database is the most telling because it’s a complete catalog of its paying users, including billing addresses. I’m not so interested in the street addresses so much as the zip codes. And what do those zip codes tell us?
From the seven residential zip codes that make up the Santa Clarita Valley, there are just over 1,500 paid users in their database. This gives the SCV a rate of 5.4 Ashley Madison users per thousand residents. Take the 2010 zip code population numbers and use those to (roughly) draw the SCV neighborhoods and you get this:
Apart from the exposing its members, the hack also exposed the site for being a huge scam. Almost 100% of its actual users were men, and nearly all the “female” profiles were inactive and likely created by the company to make its paying members believe they had a shot with someone. But they would have been better off talking to Siri.