The company said at the time it will no longer use female "bots" or automated programs that respond to members pretending to be women on the hunt for men.
According to the FTC complaint, until August 2014, operators of the site lured customers, including 19 million Americans, with fake profiles of women designed to convert them into paid members.
The fallout led to reports of blackmail and even suicides.
The financial penalty, split between the federal government and US states suing the company, would increase to .75 million to the FTC plus .75 million to states if Ashley Madison fails to abide by new information security practices and refrain from misleading consumers.
Back in August 2015, the ‘dating’ site Ashley Madison was hacked, exposing married cheaters the world over.
We found out 86 per cent of the site’s users were men, São Paulo had the most registered users of any city and it’s mainly used by rich, powerful men.
"This case represents one of the largest data breaches that the FTC has investigated to date, implicating 36 million individuals worldwide," said FTC chairwoman Edith Ramirez.
"The global settlement requires Ashley to implement a range of more robust data security practices that will better protect its users' personal information from criminal hackers going forward." No compensation Ramirez said the penalty being paid is too small to allow for "redress" or compensation to affected consumers, noting that compensation is rarely obtained in data security cases.
But if I wasn't and I wanted to spice up my life with a bout of infidelity, there are several dating websites designed with that in mind.
Executives for Avid Life Media, the parent company of the extramarital affairs, admitted to being investigated by the US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) over the use of fembots in an interview with Reuters.
After a massive data breach in August 2015, which exposed the personal information of 37 million users, it was revealed that men were disproportionately more active on the site than women. In addition, more than 70,000 of the site’s female users were allegedly fembots, Annalee Newitz of Gizmodo reported.
But what became of the marriages of the guilty parties, whose secret infidelity was suddenly not-so-secret at all?
One man who was exposed in the hacking has now spoken out about what happened to him in an article for the LA Times. He’d been married for 19 years, and although he’d been faithful to his wife the whole time, the excitement in their relationship had fizzled: “Call it a midlife crisis, poor judgment or a cheater’s heart. We had not taken a vacation without children in years.” Thomas retired from his corporate job early, bought a Harley Davidson and got a tattoo - so far, so midlife crisis.