1001 Ashley Madison users in SLO County

August 28, 2015


In San Luis Obispo County, of the 1001 participants on the hookup website Ashley Madison, 978 are men and 23 are women. The largest single occupation for local users is lawyer followed by doctor.

Users include pastors, school teachers, a large number of business owners, three local media executives, government workers, and several family members of a high-ranking government official. The list also includes Arroyo Grande Citizen of the Year Lenny Jones, who is currently housed in the county jail while he faces charges of child molestation.

On July 12, hackers threatened to expose users of the site if its administrators did not take it down. On Aug. 17, the hackers followed through on their threat and released the credit card and billing information of the more than 37 million users of Ashley Madison.

The site, with a tagline that says, “Life is short, have an affair,” claims it provides participants access to married people wanting to have an affair.

Ashley Madison

CalCoastNews’ technical team downloaded the Ashley Madison financial charges, personal profiles and messages, and separated it by San Luis Obispo County zip codes. Editorial staff then pored over the information and contacted a handful of users in order to provide more information on San Luis Obispo County’s Ashley Madison participants. CalCoastNews is not planning to publish the list or name most members of the site.

Of the top seven users in total numbers of billing charges, six were men and one was a woman. Ashley Madison users convert money for credits they spend when they message other users.

The top user was a successful businessman who made 83 payments to Ashley Madison from 2012 through 2014. The man lived in Avila Beach until he died earlier this year with his wife holding his hand, according to his obituary.

The second most prolific user, with 55 purchases, is a man who works for PG&E and lives in Atascadero. A 71-year-old Los Osos man is third on the list.

Tied for fourth and fifth place are a pastor from Paso Robles and a female dancer from Arroyo Grande. A Shandon rancher is sixth on the list and a Creston farmer is seventh.

Of the 23 women on the list, one is a Nipomo woman who describes herself on Facebook as a wife, mother and member of a service club. There is a dancer, an instructor with the Atascadero Unified School District, a nurse at the Atascadero State Hospital, an attorney’s wife (he is on there also), and several government employees.

One San Luis Obispo man in his 30s initially responded, “I don’t remember signing up for Ashley Madison.” when asked about his name appearing on the list. He then said, “You didn’t look at the pictures, did you?”

A San Luis Obispo based attorney said he began utilizing Ashley Madison at a time he was no longer intimate with his wife, though they were still living together. “I was still married, that’s why I joined Ashley Madison,” he said.

A local media executive who participated in Ashley Madison from 2008 through 2013, said that along with his wife he now counsels other couples about the perils of internet cheat sites. The San Luis Obispo man said his wife is aware of his participation with Ashley Madison, but his children are not.

“It is part of my past that I’m not proud of,” he said. “It’s been about 10 years since I’ve been on the site.”

When the hackers released the data, they claimed that thousands of the 5.5 million female profiles were fakes added by Ashley Madison to attract men.

In San Luis Obispo County, only 2 percent of paid participants from July 2008 through May 2015 were female. Of those, it appears only one, the dancer, was an active user of the site after joining.

These numbers support what several men told CalCoastNews, that though they checked their Ashley Madison mail and sent messages, they never actually met in person any of the women they chatted with on Ashley Madison.

From July 2008 through May 2015, San Luis Obispo County residents paid approximately $85,000 to join and participate on Ashley Madison.

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Why not just publish the local list, if it’s now public? I’ve seen many stories that selectively flog an individual. What’s up CCN?

Okay folks, I understand that some of you have been exposed… hey, it must be embarrassing for you… and having to discuss this over with your spouse is going to be difficult… but it has to happen.

If there really was anything called a ‘right to privacy’, the NSA snooping on everyone would have been so out of business.There really is no such thing. I will agree that there might be an ‘expectation’ of privacy when dealing with any organization… but it has got to have occurred to even the feeblest among us that our personal information is out there waiting to be scooped up by some enterprising individuals.

Privacy is an illusion.

When the internet was new and my daughters started to go on line, we looked at some of the individual postings and I asked them what they thought about how the individual was presenting him or herself. One young officer in dress uniform had a picture of themselves partying on with a half consumer beer bottle… a small demerit I agree, but maybe not something they would want a superior viewing. My advice was simple: don’t post anything you don’t want seen on the front page of the New York Times.

Whether something is illegal or not doesn’t , for example, mean that voters might be turned of to you if they hear about it. Look at the story behind “Carlos Danger.” His career died and someone recently was quoted as calling him a ‘perv.’ I hope the big local government official doesn’t wait until before the election to be exposed… damage control starts early… or just not go on.

We all have the right to know something about who teaches our children, represents us in government and presents themselves to us and our families. The Madison site tells us more than we want to know about some people… but deal with it.

Gosh Roger, I’m in shock that anyone could possibly give your post a thumbs down (and so many). When it comes to conducting ones life, everything you said is absolutely right on. We can not ever rely on absolute privacy so we must think before we act. Are this many people really so unwilling to take responsibility for themselves? No wonder we have such a nanny government mentality our there and it’s getting worse all the time.

Well Cindy,

I would tend to agree except my last paragraph implies we all might have to face the obvious consequences of any action we take in life:

“We all have the right to know something about who teaches our children, represents us in government and presents themselves to us and our families. The Madison site tells us more than we want to know about some people… but deal with it.”

Remembering that there are 1001 folks looking for love outside their marriage in this county, one can only imagine that a few of these folks have found their way on CCN to stem the hemorrhaging by any means possible. It is a pattern happening all around the country. When was the last time you read anything about all the 100 or so folks signed up in the White House?? the 13,000 in the military?

In any event, the information is out there and sometime somewhere somebody may ask them a favor… or

Roger writes “If there really was anything called a ‘right to privacy’, the NSA snooping on everyone would have been so out of business.There really is no such thing”


How about that pesky 14th Amendment Amendment IV

(Privacy of the Person and Possessions)

The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.

That’s the law the government is violating. Unfortunately, we have a lawless government as evidenced by the NSA spying.

This is not germane to the Ashley Madison situation, however, there are rights to privacy.

Thank you for addressing the most important issue of our time – other people’s sex lives.

Adultery is just one of many sinful acts in the eyes of our Lord God.

1 John 1:8-10 (NKJV)

8: If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. 9: If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. 10: If we say that we have not sinned, we make Him a liar, and His word is not in us.

While I personally find this website disgusting, it really isn’t my business (or yours) how people spend their money or what they do in their private lives.

I saw that a husband and wife were BOTH on the site. How do we know they weren’t both ok with having an open marriage? We DON’T.

This is America. People have a right to their private lives, as immoral as we might think it to be.

When we begin to “out” people for things that we believe are not ok, it begins a slippery slope I am not sure I want to venture down. Will hackers then release information on who is on erectile dysfunction medication? Will they release who has filed bankruptcy, because that is not good to back out on debts.

Hacking information must not be tolerated. I CAN be a form of terrorism. Remember, more and more of our personal information is not stored electronically.

Again, I think people cheating on their spouses is inexcusable as my personal opinion. We cannot rule a country by emotion.

Please, don’t lecture me. And, lighten up, most of the comments can be taken with a dared of levity.

degree of levity

I am actually a pretty relaxed person. I apologize if you felt lectured.

I guess I consider privacy one of those rights that go under the heading of “liberty”. I am very surprised that people are so very ok with being monitored. We are already taxed, we are super regulated in CA, often in the name of “safety and protection”. This premise assumes that John/Jane Q Citizen are not capable of making informed decisions. It is insulting.

In this case, I think Calcoastnews did an ok job presenting facts. I just personally think that the specifics, like the old man dying in Avila (which I could figure out if I wanted to) isn’t necessary. The number of SLO residents, the male/female ratio, the professions, would have been interesting on their own. How they paid is fair game. These facts are generic enough that privacy is preserved, but if a man/woman thought their spouse was on the site, they could read the article, do some digging, and catch their cheater. Who knows, maybe Calcoastnews could get some thank you letters.

I fully understand that my opinions are not shared with everyone. I am passionate about personal liberties. Once forfeited, they are near impossible to get back. Just my thought.

I agree that a person’s sex life is their own business. I don’t think people should be outed…UNLESS…they publicly hold forth themselves as a man/woman of “god” and tells people they should follow the Bible’s teachings, including re: fornication.

Perhaps the “pastor from Paso” was ministering to the cheating wives out there. He would meet them via the website and preach to them the err of their sinful ways.

That will likely be his story on Sunday.

I think it is more likely the Paso pastor was playing Jesus by using his own rod and staff to comfort his Ashley Madison contacts.

Similar to the recent highly criticized (and eventually retracted) Gawker post that outed an executive, this article goes way too far in delving into the personal lives of private individuals who have done nothing illegal, and using unverified and illegally obtained material to do so.

A few things to keep in mind here:

1. Anybody can easily open an Ashley Madison account using someone else’s name, address, photo, and e-mail, so someone’s info in the database does not mean the account was actually created and/or used by them.

2. Even if someone did open an account, you can’t conclude their motive was infidelity, there are plenty of other reasons someone might open an account: To see if their spouse had an account, to do a story on the site, to see what it is all about, etc.

3. And even if they did find a hookup on the site (which apparently rarely happened), you don’t know if they were in an open relationship and had permission of their partner, or if were estranged from their wife, or one of many other options.

4. And finally, you may not agree with infidelity, but it is not illegal. However hacking in to a private website and revealing user’s personal and financial data definitely is a felony.

Mentioning the hand holding detail from one former user’s obituary was particularly repulsive – it was obviously included to appeal to people’s appetite for scandalous and lurid details, and it also makes it very easy for anyone to do a quick google search and figure out exactly who that user was. The poor guy is dead and cannot defend himself or offer any explanation, if it actually even belonged to him, so all this info does is soil the memory of someone who did nothing illegal and possibly nothing immoral either.

What’s next? If someone hacks into an insurance database and posts medical info, will this site post vague but identifiable information about which SLO county residents are in rehab, who has HIV, who is getting treated for mental health disorders, etc?


The list actually can be/is verified. These members had to pay with credit cards. Their name and address had to match the info attached to their credit cards in order for the cc processors to approve the transactions. All that information is available (in the down load) along with the messages that were being shared between the parties so its easy enough to spot someone who was just curious or looking to see if a spouse was on the site verse someone who was messaging and hooking up or attempting to hook up. Granted someone could have used a stolen credit card but they would have been discovered by the site management within days (if not minutes) and the account would have been deleted and the stolen credit card info removed.

As to the AG man who died. CCN did not mention his age, cause of death, profession, date of death or if he had other family members etc. I seriously doubt that you can figure out which man it was who died in AG in the last 8 months. I believe there have been over 50 deaths.

I think CCN has been very professional in bringing us this latest NEWS…. Personally, when it comes to the male dogs in our happy little county, I find the statistics rather interesting. Attorneys and Physicians are the biggest sluts by profession, imagine that.

If anything it would appear that what we really need is legalized prostitution complete with upscale brothels, health checks, top of the line ladies and of course, tax it. Everybody would get what they want without any strings attached, which is why Ashley Madison is so popular to begin with. .

When I went looking through the various credit card daily files, I was actually surprised how many people used a card with their name. The “smarter” cheaters used the gift cards, and had a slightly better time being anonymous. Most people that are “confirmed” are so because of payment data that never got removed – in fact, that was the whole reason for the “leak.” Ashley Madison charged people a healthy sum to remove all traces of their presence from their system and they CLEARLY did not.

I find it funny that in 2015, people still think that when something is deleted in cyberspace that it is gone. Just look at Hillbillary and her “personal” e-mail server woes. Just another fool who really does not know shit about technology (except in her position it was potentially very dangerous for everyone).

Hillary’s “personal” email woes are a complete fabrication of the sadly lacking of ideas right.

There are numerous instances of other people in government doing the exact same thing and it’s been going on since the beginning of e-mail.

And just what makes you think

“Government” emails are one bit more secure? Come on, let’s have some examples.

The simple truth is that NO communication through the internet is entirely secure, NONE. And crying over Hillary’s supposed breach is simply crocodile tears. Tell me just what damage can you point to that was caused by this?

No “Hillary campaign” in the ashley madison database. This is not the 2016 election article you were looking for.

I posted this earlier, but it seems that it was deleted by the “censors”, but basically none of this data can actually be independently verified unless you run the credit card information through your own processor, which would be highly illegal.

So essentially you have to completely trust that these hackers (who already committed multiple dishonest felonies) are somehow honest and trustworthy enough to not have modified the data at all (very doubtful), and furthermore that Ashley Madison was competent enough to actually properly verify the names and addresses of all the account holders before charging them (also doubtful, since they were incompetent enough to get hacked) and furthermore you have to trust that no one else violated their inadequate security and modified or compromised their data before the most recent hackers got to it.

What is comes down to is that this is an extremely poor chain of custody: evidence that has gone through multiple untrusted, unethical, and/or incompetent parties and could easily have been modified at any stage. Not exactly the kind of solid verified evidence that you should use when releasing information that could potentially ruin someone’s life.

This is not “evidence” – this is data.

Should Ashley Madison be taken to court, then it may very well become evidence.

If they were to modify the data, it would be easily detectable for the credit card numbers, as each and every number has a simple Mod 10 (see Luhn algorithm for more info).

And there are tens of thousands of them to modify, if that were the case.

No, this is the data, it is in dump format (which is generally how a database is compromised). Finally, the “censors” here are notorious, and I’ll leave it at that.

In the end, not every piece of “evidence” is acquired through “trusted” or “ethical” means. I.E. a rat/squealer, a prison cellmate relaying information, a politician’s testimony, a president’s promise, etc.

I didn’t see your post before I posted. I agree.

The issue is not morality. I think almost anyone you could informally poll out on the streets of SLO county would think someone posting on this site is disgusting. The issue is the right to personal privacy. What right do I (or Calcoastnews) have to have access to someone else’s private information? I know most readers have at some point known someone who have cheated on their partner/spouse. Do you run on over and tell the offended party their spouse is cheating? Most people stay out of the private lives of others, because it’s NOT our business! I am sure these men have kids. I would hate to think about kids hurt by this. But hey, I guess if people paid with credit cards, it’s all fair game…..