Ashley Madison hacker may be Australian, likes AC/DC


blog Up until now, relatively little information has been known about The Impact Team — the shadowy group of anonymous hackers who have released gigabytes upon gigabytes of data from extramarital affair site Ashley Madison. However, pioneering US security journalist Brian Krebs — who has broken a number of major hacking stories over the past several years — thinks he may have tracked down one of the perpetrators. The kicker? He appears to be Australian and may be a fan of local supergroup AC/DC. Krebs writes on his site, Krebs on Security (we recommend you click here to examine the evidence) regarding a Twitter user known as ‘Thadeus Zu’, who appears to be based in Australia:

“It is possible that Zu is instead a white hat security researcher or confidential informant who has infiltrated the Impact Team and is merely riding on their coattails or acting as their mouthpiece. But one thing is clear: If Zu wasn’t involved in the hack, he almost certainly knows who was.”

According to Krebs, Zu was responsible for, among other things, defacing the website of the Federal Parliament, and has a habit of linking the AC/DC song ‘Thunderstruck’ in his online exchanges.

At this point, the evidence is a little sketchy regarding Zu. Krebs doesn’t appears to have much, if any, inside information regarding this individual. However, Krebs is very well known in the US for the forensic style in which he examines online clues left by hackers to track them down. The fact that the journalist has pointed the finger at Zu indicates that there is something worth investigating here. I am absolutely certain that police in several jurisdictions have already made note of Krebs’ post.

To be honest, I wouldn’t be surprised if one or more of the Ashley Madison hackers was based in Australia. As a country, we regularly throw up hackers of various types, due no doubt to our relatively high education levels and somewhat rebellious past ;)

Image credit: Avid Life Media


  1. I think the best story to come out today RE the Ashley Madison hack was the news that the real, actual male:female ratio was more like 7780:3.

    Despite the unfortunate fallout that has occurred with anyone who signed up and had their details leaked, it seems AM Life (the owners) were more upset about losing their cash-cow operation that was basically fleecing millions of men out of money each month for a service that was unlikely to ever deliver on anything it promised, at least not without “paying for it” as the other news bite indicated that most of the ‘available’ women were in actual fact, prostitutes that were paid to sign up to the service.

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