The parent company of Ashley Madison has reached a $11.2 million settlement agreement for victims of a data breach that occurred in 2015.
On 14 July, Ruby Life Inc. (formerly Avid Dating Life Inc.) reached the agreement with plaintiffs who had filed class-action lawsuits against the company for the 2015 data breach. The agreed-upon settlement fund will, among other things, provide payments to members of the lawsuits who submit valid claims of losses stemming from the data breach and other misrepresentations.
News first broke about the data breach in July 2015 when hackers published 40 MB of sensitive internal data stolen from then-Avid Life Dating pertaining to Ashley Madison, an online casual encounter service. In the months that followed, those responsible for the hack ultimately dumped the personal information for more than 30 million of its customers online. That data included affected users’ login credentials, addresses, phone numbers, financial details, and real names.
Ruby Life Inc., which says it’s taken several steps since 2015 to improve the security of its customers’ data, has denied any wrongdoing in connection with the data breach. All the same, it feels the settlement will help spare it and plaintiffs from the “uncertainty, expense, and inconvenience associated with continued litigation.”
Only class action members who submit “valid claims” can expect to receive payment from the settlement fund. As a press release regarding the agreement explains:
“In 2015, hackers gained access to ruby’s computer networks and published certain personal information contained in Ashley Madison accounts. Account credentials were not verified for accuracy during this timeframe and accounts may have been created using other individuals’ information. Therefore, ruby wishes to clarify that merely because a person’s name or other information appears to have been released in the data breach does not mean that person actually was a member of Ashley Madison.”
Additional information about the agreement will come forth if the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Missouri, which is hearing the lawsuits, approves the settlement agreement.