Ashley Madison gives you three ways to act on your regret: (1) to hide your profile from search, meaning users you don’t already know will struggle to find it; (2) to hide the profile entirely, which will make it invisible but still allow you to reactive it; and (3) the big one: the “Full Delete,” which promises to nuke every message you’d ever sent or received, all your browsing history and any other evidence that you’d ever so much as heard of Ashley Madison/dreamt about cheating.

I’m also dismayed to find that Naughty Boy69 is also unavailable. Two hours later my inbox is still ringing hollow – not a single response.

Testing if the experience is gender-specific, I coax a female colleague (see right) into signing up to a rival site. On a separate account, posing as a woman, I get chatting to a male user.

Aping a provincial nightclub, women are granted full use of the site free of charge, while men have to pay. I can’t help but wonder why he didn’t just sign up for the Affair Guarantee Package of 2,000 credits at a reasonable £229.80.

While I um and ah about forking out another wedge, the messages start to arrive.

Avid Life Media, the site’s parent company, is yet to announce a course of action.

A spokesperson declined to comment, but instead pointed me to a press release which stated: “At this time, we have been able to secure our sites. After a few dead-end conversations, a flashing box invites me to “call collect” with a user.(A spokesperson for Ashley Madison declined to comment.) That, more than anything, would seem to prove the immortality of our online sins: There’s no erasing the digital past. Here, for reference, is how Ashley Madison’s “Full Delete” feature worked.Suppose you thought about stepping out on your spouse, started up an Ashley Madison profile and then promptly regretted it.But they are outnumbered by a second group of twentysomethings who are just as straightforward.“A sugar daddy,” comes one succinct response to my introductory question. The site invites me to spend it at every turn, and users were even charged £15 to delete their profile prior to the hack.Their stories are largely the same old cliché: stuck in a loveless marriage and seeking a thrill to ease the mid-life crisis.