(Pocket-lint) - Since the threat of all of Ashley Madison's users having their data released online first emerged, it was heavily speculated that a vast majority of those would be of the male persuasion. However, there had to be some women right? After all, you can't have an extra-marital affair without a willing other party. And it was predominantly if not exclusively aimed at straight individuals.
However, since the threat has become reality and the hackers made good on their promise to release the entire user database online, it now seems that very few of the members were real women. Indeed, the vast majority were fake accounts made up by Ashley Madison staff, it is alleged.
Gizmodo's editor-in-chief, Annalee Newitz, went through the leaked information with a data scientist to find out exactly how many of the female users were likely to be real and came up with some shocking results.
The database itself revealed that there were more than 37 million users, with just over 5.5 million of them purportedly women.
But Newitz discovered that around 10,000 female accounts used an ashleymadison.com email address - almost certainly because they were made up by staff from within the building. In addition, 68,709 female profiles were created from the same 127.0.0.1 IP address. Again, highly likely to have been created by staff members.
But more alarming still is that she found a data field for each member that revealed how many members checked their Ashley Madison account inboxes and when, and only 1,492 women had ever checked theirs. Ever.
In comparison to the more than 20 million men who had, that's quite a stunning figure.
The figure rose when a separate message reply data field was checked. Newitz found that 9,700 women had replied to messages on the system, because it is possible to do so without having to enter the inbox itself. But 9,700 out of the 5,550,687 million claimed female users is still mind-bogglingly small.
It is, in fact, 0.17 per cent of the claimed users. That's how many real women used the site according to the leaked data.
And to think, men were worried that their spouses would find out about their cheating. From these statistics none of them were.