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Ashley Madison isn't the only place to cheat. Infidelity thrives on social media
While the Ashley Madison website is one of the most recognizable and public ways people are arranging affairs, its important to note that its not the only place to cheat. - photo by Shelby Slade
When your dating websites slogan is Life is short. Have an affair, it might seem like karma that 35 million cheaters are at the mercy of hackers threatening to release their information.

After a massive data breach, the popular dating site Ashley Madison, which is specifically designed for people looking to have affairs, is scrambling to protect its users, Charles Riley reported for CNN.

While Ashley Madison is one of the most recognizable and public sites people are using to arrange affairs, its important to note that its not the only place people cheat.

As Aaron Nemo pointed out in an article for The Huffington Post, many websites can be used to kindle affairs and keep them secret, especially social media.

Social media is becoming an increasingly popular place to start or instigate affairs.

In the United Kingdom, 1 in 7 people said they had considered divorce based on the social media habits of their spouses, whether it was the content they were sharing or the way they were using sites like Facebook, Snapchat, Twitter and Skype, Brittany Wong reported for The Huffington Post.

Beyond that, the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers reported that 81 percent of its member lawyers had seen a large surge in people using information from Facebook in their divorce proceedings.

As everyone continues to share more and more aspects of their lives on social networking sites, they leave themselves open to much greater examinations of both their public and private lives in these sensitive situations, said Marlene Eskind Moses, president of AAML.

Caitlin Dewey reported for The Washington Post that people are using Facebook consistently to keep up relationships with back-burners, "backup" romantic partners to turn to if a current relationship doesn't work out.

This constitutes remote infidelity, an emotional affair that plays out over the Internet and smartphones, Dewey explained.

At some level, this idea of digital cheating or remote infidelity is just a very old concept in new, trendy clothes, Dewey wrote. Emotional infidelity, a sort of destructive, unconsummated affair, went down in bars and over cubicle walls long before we had Gchat records of it. To some extent, the Internet has only made these things more visible, better-documented: There are finally texts and emails to back up our suspicions.

While the use of social media for extramarital affairs is becoming more common, Americans are still very opposed to the idea.

A study conducted by Gallup's Andrew Dugan shows that only 8 percent of Americans find infidelity to be acceptable, and this number has remained relatively unchanged over the years.

"The nation's thoughts on extramarital affairs may be considered an island of stability amid this sea change," Dugan explained. "Even as much of the country expands the institution of marriage to include gay and lesbian couples, there has been no redefining of the commitment a couple enters into when they get married."
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