Ten email addresses that end with gov.hk have been found so far in the voluminous AshleyMadison.com data leaked by hackers, Apple Daily reported.
The information suggests that some civil servants in Hong Kong might have used work email and government resources to get on to the infidelity website.
A hackers group called Impact Team on Tuesday released a trove of data online after breaking into the servers of the Canada-based Ashley Madison last month.
Among the millions of email addresses were some ending with gov.hk, or those used by Hong Kong government personnel.
According to Apple Daily, the email data involves people from nine government institutions, namely Hongkong Post, Environmental Protection Department, Legislative Council, Social Welfare Department, Leisure and Cultural Services Department, Education Bureau, Trade and Industry Department, Architectural Services Department, and the Electrical and Mechanical Services Department.
However, all the civil servants who are connected with the emails have denied that they were Ashley Madison members.
Some claimed they weren’t even aware of the website that encourages people to have extramarital affairs, and they had no idea why their work emails made it to the leaked membership list.
The Electrical and Mechanical Services Department said its email system shows no communication record between the department’s premises and Ashley Madison.
A senior female manager serving at Hongkong Post said her business email, which is on the list revealed by hackers, is open information and could be used for registration purpose by anyone.
Among the leaked data was an email address [email protected], but it has been confirmed that no such email exists in the government’s directory, the report said. Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying is often referred to as CY.
In addition to civil servants, at least 30 emails were also found ending with edu.hk that is used by educators at work.
The teachers contacted by Apple Daily all denied having registered on Ashley Madison.
The Office of the Government Chief Information Officer said authorities will follow up on cases in which government employees are suspected of misusing the office equipment and facilities provided for them.
TVB News director Keith Yuen Chi-wai also asserted he had never visited AshleyMadison.com and that he no idea why an email that is the same as the one he uses for work is on the list.
After TVB aired a video last year which showed seven police officers beating up an Occupy protester, Yuen’s email and contact number were put up by some people on the online forum hkgolden.com, and he started receiving a lot of junk email, according to the TV station official.
Yuen said he has been receiving more than a hundred spam messages everyday. As many people appear to know his email address, it is possible that someone stole it for other use, he said.
On Wednesday, a Facebook page titled “Frontline technology staff” posted a message that Yuen’s work email was found among the membership list of Ashley Madison.
Yuen came under fire in online forums last year over his alleged decision to remove subtitles in the video that depicted police brutality on an Occupy protester in a dark corner at Tamar Park. Some TVB staff too voiced their displeasure over the editing of the video report.
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