A niche dating website called Muslim Match has suffered a data breach exposing roughly 150,000 user accounts and more than half a million private messages.
The dataset consists of usernames, email addresses, IP addresses, chat logs, hashed passwords and geographic locations. Security researcher Troy Hunt has uploaded the information into breach notification website HaveIBeenPwned and the data was released in full by TheCthulhu – a well-known name in hacking circles.
IBTimes UK has obtained and viewed a copy of the leaked database, which includes eight separate documents, six of which are in Sql format. Both Muslim Match and a sample of the users in the data dump have been approached for additional comment. At the time of writing, the website is offline.
One of the leaked files, marked SEPMs, contains roughly 790,000 private messages between users – many of an intimate or confessional nature. "I was not married or engaged before. As much as I always wanted to share my life with a Muslim wife, I was not fortunate enough to meet my soul mate before now," a message reads.
A separate user said: "Fancy chatting to a 2ft, 65 stone geek, with big goggly eyes and a fettish for really crap comic books. Oh and Saturday nites (sic) I like to train spot at Kings Cross... nah didn't think so :)"
Another message stated: "I'm interested to get to know you, as I am looking for a soul mate / wife, and hope that it will be you. Please write to me and send me your photo please. I will tell you everything about myself too, and please don't go by what is written in the profile. There are lots to tell you about. Life is too short to waste it without loving someone and be loved by someone." There are many more from users spanning the UK, US and Middle East.
While most of the users appeared to be using the website for dating purposes, the Muslim Match social media pages describe the service as a "100% free marriage service". On its Facebook page, it says the website could be used to "share ideas, thoughts and find a suitable marriage partner".
Speaking to technology website Motherboard, which was able to make contact with a number of impacted users, one person described the situation as "very scary". Another user stressed disappointment about the lack of encryption used by the website, which is used by hundreds of thousands of members to share sensitive and private information in confidence.
Are you a user of Muslim Match concerned about the leak? Get in contact via email@example.com