By Jonathan Davies

Customer data from Ashley Madison has been leaked, according to reports.

The controversial dating website for people who want to cheat on their partners was hacked last month, but the data had not been released.

Now it is reported that the data, which includes customer names and credit card details, has been released on the dark web - an area of the internet only accessible via encrypted browsers.

Tech magazine Wired claims that nearly 10 gigabyte worth of data has been posted.

The hackers, called the Impact Team, says it stole real names and addresses of Ashley Madison's users, even those who have paid to have their data removed.

In a statement, Canada-based Avid Life Media, which owns Ashley Madison, said it had "now learned that the individual or individuals responsible for this attack claim to have released more of the stolen data".

"The criminal, or criminals, involved in this act have appointed themselves as the moral judge, juror, and executioner, seeing fit to impose a personal notion of virtue on all of society. We will not sit idly by and allow these thieves to force their personal ideology on citizens around the world," the statement said.