Take a look through the millions of records allegedly belonging to dating website Ashley Madison leaked this week, and you’ll find more than 4,000 accounts claiming to be from addresses in Kitchener.

Not all of them correspond to real people. Some display phone numbers or postal codes that don’t match the area, while others appear to be potentially computer-generated.

But enough of the records appear realistic enough that it's not diffcult to imagine at least some of the 35-million-plus users Ashley Madison boasts coming from Waterloo Region.

Ashley Madison is a dating website which has publicly claimed to be the internet’s leading facilitator of extramarital liaisons, and used slogans like ‘Life is short; have an affair.’”

It’s a niche player in the online dating game, and one that people might be interested in for a variety of reasons.

“Sometimes it just comes down to pure curiosity – they’re wanting to know what it’s all about,” said Jessica Crowe, a marriage counsellor based in St. Agatha.

“For other people, it’s going to be a purely sexual nature … driving them. They’re wanting to have an affair with somebody.”

Colette Fortin is a divorce mediator based in Waterloo.

She says 38 per cent of first marriages in Ontario end in divorce, along with 60 per cent of second marriages – so the popularity of a site like Ashley Madison might not be surprising.

“Communication is often the root cause of why people are potentially unhappy, and why relationships start to break down,” she said in an interview.

“When people are unhappy in their relationship, that is often when they’re looking for someone to connect with.”

Fortin doesn’t see use of Ashley Madison or similar services as a cause of divorce, but more as a symptom of underlying causes likely already present in a relationship.

“You don’t wake up in the morning and say ‘How can I sabotage my marriage?’” she said.

On a national scale, the alleged leaked records contain the work email address of hundreds of employees of federal, provincial and municipal government employees – including more than 170 accounts associated with the Canadian Armed Forces.

The list, which CTV News has not been able to confirm the authenticity of, also contains email accounts from organizations like the Canada Revenue Agency, the RCMP, and various Canadian universities.

Hackers claim they targeted Ashley Madison and released the list when parent company Avid Life Media refused to agree to their demands to close the site.

American analysts who have scanned the data say they believe it is genuine.

Avid Life Media said in a statement that it is actively monitoring and investigating the leak to determine the validity of any information posted online.

The company has previously admitted to suffering an electronic break-in.

With files from The Canadian Press