Vice President Joe Biden’s son Hunter Biden denied he used the Ashley Madison site on Tuesday, despite an email address belonging to him being discovered in the hack of the cheating website. Breitbart News which found the account information in searching through the huge trove of data on the site’s users that was dumped online by hackers earlier this month. The account was from an “attached male” who was apparently seeking “anything goes.” It was created in 2014. In his statement, Biden said he stopped using the email address that was used to set up the account because he believed it may have been compromised, and alluded to other times he was impersonated in an attempt to sully his reputation, though he did not name any specific incidents.
He also cited press reports that the website did not verify emails used to create accounts — meaning that theoretically anyone can register with an email address even if they do not control the address. Hunter Biden, an investment banking executive and lawyer, is also no stranger to uncomfortable headlines. But the appearance of a given email address or account name in the database is not a smoking gun, experts say. Ashley Madison doesn’t authenticate email addresses when users sign up, deliberately giving users the “plausible deniability” of membership. Biden alluded to the lack of authentication in his statement, indicating that he had been targeted in this kind of scam before.
“From my understanding through press accounts, it is very easy to set up an account without someone’s knowledge as there is no requirement that an email address be verified and I am certain that is what happened in this case,” Biden said. “This is, unfortunately, not the first time that someone has used my name and identity to try to discredit me.” Representatives for Biden told Breitbart News that the lawyer and businessman’s international enemies have made a targeted effort to acquire his personal information. Biden said he no longer uses the email address connected to the Ashley Madison account because it had been hacked.
The Washington Metropolitan Police were unable to check records dating back to June of 2014 for reported instances of identity theft linked to Mr. Biden’s Washington address but it was able to confirm that no official claims had been filed recently. The vice president’s son Hunter is the latest casualty of the data dump that accompanied a hack on cheating website last month that affected its 33 million users.
The Bidens are the second, prominent American family with political ties to be hurt by it, Last week Josh Duggar, the former executive director for the Family Research Council’s political action group and the son of 19 Kids and Counting stars Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar, was revealed to have had multiple accounts on the scandalous spousal cheating site. Duggar, who had already hustled out of Washington, D.C. after admitting that he molested his younger sisters in his childhood, copped to charges of infidelity to his wife in a public apology. Hunter Biden made global headlines in 2014 for joining the board of the Ukraine-based gas company Burisma Holdings during the height of the crisis in Ukraine. Biden’s father, Vice President Joe Biden, was engaged in an effort at the time to help Ukraine lessen its dependence on fuel from Russia.