Updated: Feb 22, 2017
aNewDomain — Last year, millions of wayward mates bristled at hackers’ release of 35 million names and emails at Ashley Madison, the notorious cheaters’ site. The hack compromised the entire company’s infrastructure and resulted first in 10 gigabytes of leaked data, and then another 14GB, which hackers downloaded in a zipped format to the DarkNet. The data is reportedly from Ashley Madison CEO Noel Biderman’s email account, and it includes a massive clientele of supposedly errant spouses, 95 percent of whom are reportedly male.
Carried out by a group called the Impact Team, the first major “celebrity” to be exposed is Josh Duggar, of recently canceled “19 Kids and Counting.” Duggar, who has paraded his devout family values, lost his show in large part to his admission that he had molested his sisters as a teen. And now, thanks to the hack, Duggar publicly admitted his membership, calling himself the “biggest hypocrite ever.”
The Impact Team, in statements, has said it’s on a mission to expose various Ashley Madison business practices, a mission that appears to be working. The BBC states:
The news site Fusion has reported that at least one US law firm is already inviting members of the public to be part of a class action lawsuit against Avid Life Media.”
Despite or perhaps because of the site’s questionable moral issues, privacy advocates are crying foul, using Big Brother language to do it.
You may recall the same outcry occurred when former NSA contractor Edward Snowden disclosed in 2013 that the U.S. government tracks all mail, calls, texts and emails.
The hacktivist movement has been chalked up as a form of social activism to expose the hypocrisy of self-righteous spouses, governments or anyone, really, who it judges as not being honest.
Predictably, app makers moved to immediately capitalize on the Ashley Madision hack and resulting scandal. Here’s a sample of what they’ve come up with, for better or worse.
Your Smartphone Is A Spy Gadget, Too
For jealous spouses suspicious of infidelity, software can be installed on a mobile phone to monitor calls, texts, emails and movements. Yes, it’s a bit creepy. But it’s one way — admittedly an unsavory way — to find the truth.
And you don’t have to be a hacker to tail your lover, either.
Mobile phones are highly effective spy gadgets. GPS chips, microphones and built-in cameras are all at your fingertips, all day. In some instances, only the IMEI number from the subject’s mobile phone is necessary for a track.
Text, calls and emails your partner makes can all be transmitted to your mobile real time.
One easy and efficient software solution to catch a cheating spouse is the mSpy app, which can be installed on a PC or any Android or Apple iOS device. Any potential deception by your partner will be revealed — just install the mSpy software. It’s the leading spy app on the mobile market and grants you access to all functions and options within a given mobile phone: text messages, location monitoring, web crawling control, instant messaging, multimedia sharing, calendars, social networking, address books and a sound recorder.
The spy software is entirely undetectable and will provide a peace of mind — if you’re concerned about a cheating partner. (Fair warning — it might also make you extremely paranoid and, again, creepy.)
Following installation and activation of the app on the mobile device of your partner (or child or friend or … you get the idea), you log into your mSpy control panel via your PC or smartphone. Then you begin to monitor recent movements and messages.
Many will agree that a cheating spouse deserves exposure. The reality, though, is that using software like mSpy may break some laws — like stalking for illegal surveillance. The Computer Fraud and Abuse Act of 1986 prohibits accessing a computer (and other devices) without authorization and constitutes a criminal offense.
There’s a gray area if ownership of the phone in question is billed through another’s name, such as a spouse, parent or employer. This issue is new ground legally and morally, and it’s unclear what specifically the law says in a given circumstance. However, judges may consider aggravation of the improper invasion of privacy given any evidence of damaged property or if someone was hurt.
Turning The Tide Towards Privacy
Tech is also available to protect individual privacy and compromising data. Preserving the status quo of anonymity and secrets is your purview, just the same as using mSpy to catch someone in the act is, too. Well, it is your purview to spy if you own the phone line your spouse or lover or employee is using.
For those who fear a snooping spouse — or want your own privacy — here is a highlight of helpful apps. I’ve taken some from the list of Complex’s “25 Ways to Cheat on your Girlfriend,” and include quotes from that “non-judgemental” source. Though, it’s recommended not to cheat — maybe try being honest? Like a hacktivist.
Cate | Call and Text Eraser for Android ($4.99): “Android’s most popular call and text eraser keeps your personal business safe from suspicious lovers. Unlock the service through a secret pin number when someone walks away or shake the handset to delete the evidence. What’s most interesting about the app is that it can be used to help dudes spy on their significant others. Just secretly install the program on their Android phone and monitor any dirty activity.”
Vault Stocks for Android ($9.99): “This app allows you to trick your girl into thinking you keep tabs on the stock market, while you’re really accessing your private collection of raunchy photos and videos. The software is so dynamic, not even a file manager will be able to locate your hidden content.”
LookOut Security and Antivirus for Android (Free): “When shit is close to hitting the fan or you get that gut feeling the jig is super-close to being up, self-destruct your mobile. The Lookout app will be more than happy to oblige with your commands, providing the ability to remotely wipe your phone clean of any possible traces. Just know the consequence of this leads to having a factory Android phone. Consider this a last-ditch effort.”
DateMate for Android (Free): “For the player who’s juggling multiple women at once, DateMate stores personal info on mistresses and lets you create graphs ranking each one’s ‘progress’ and ‘performance.’ It also keeps track of your sex encounters with them. You know, in case you forget.”
Nosy Trap for Apple iOS ($0.99): “Should put a halt to your girl’s snooping ways. How? The app displays a fake iPhone settings screen and captures photos via the front-facing camera of anyone attempting to search through phone. Consider it the perfect tool to have for when the time comes to run turn the tables on her.”
Spy Pix for Apple iOS (Free): “Last thing you want is your girl browsing through your iPhone messages and peeping exotic selfies of some other chick. Spy Pix thinks one step ahead by masking images and requiring users to decode them in order to view in full.”
And About Last Night …
All of these privacy apps protect your data, but they don’t cover your tracks. You’ll still have to explain your late night work schedule, overnights on the road or that strange perfume scent on your clothes.
So much about cheating is emotional, not factual, and these apps (mSpy included) only deal with the data. The old maxim stands: If you don’t want to be monogamous, don’t get married.
Does it feel like somebody’s watching you? They just might be. Here’s a video for you, below.