Today the first person was positively identified from the data – Thelma Arnold, a 62-year-old widow who lives in Lilburn, Georgia.
Based on searches ranging from “numb fingers” to “60 single men” to “dog that urinates on everything,” the New York Times was able to quickly determine and confirm her identity. Ms Arnold is AOL searcher no. 4417749.
Ms Arnold commented: “My goodness, it’s my whole personal life…I had no idea somebody was looking over my shoulder.”
AOL replied: “We apologize specifically to her…There is not a whole lot we can do.”