Tesco has been hit by hackers preventing thousands of frustrated shoppers from buying groceries online from the UK’s largest supermarket.
The outage puts the grocery website and app out of service for a second day, so people can’t book deliveries or change existing orders. Tesco receives 1.3 million online orders every week.
A Tesco spokesperson said: “As of yesterday, we have had disruptions on our online grocery website and app. An attempt was made to intervene in our systems, which led to problems with the search function on the site. We are working hard to fully restore all services and we apologize for the inconvenience.
“There is no reason to believe that this issue will affect customer data, and we continue to take continuous action to ensure that all data remains secure.”
Tesco was hacked back in 2014 when it was forced to deactivate customer accounts online after posting more than 2,000 logins, including passwords, online. A separate attack on Tesco’s banking branch resulted in a loss of £ 2.5 million two years later.
Cyber attacks are becoming more common and many companies and other organizations are targeted around the world. This summer, a cyber attack on Brazilian meat processor JBS, the largest in the world, forced it to temporarily suspend production in the US, Australia and Canada.
Buyers expressed their frustration on social media. Some posted messages they had received from the supermarket that Tesco was currently unable to access or change orders due to the “current IT problem”.
Sara Willman, Wiltshire florist wholesaler, tweeted that she was told to send a direct message to cancel her order due Sunday, but later received a response from Tesco stating that it could not.
“I understand you still have IT problems, but as much as I love gin, I don’t need 2 bottles and a few chips tonight when @asda saved the day with real food this morning,” she said.
Customers complained that there was no update for 24 hours Tesco had tweeted on Saturday: “We have a problem with our website and app and are working hard to get things working again. We apologize for any inconvenience.”
Several Tesco customers said they placed incomplete orders to secure their delivery slots and were unable to replenish them.
A Tesco customer service member said via twitter that when customers no longer wanted their order, the driver would bring them back to the store for a refund.
On Sunday morning the company has tweeted: “Our IT teams are doing their best and will get the website and app up and running as soon as possible. At the moment we don’t have any updates or a time frame as to when we can expect this. I am really sorry. TY – Cameron. “
Competing supermarket Asda quickly jumped in on Saturday as it went on Twitter: “Hello, hopefully we can help. We have places available and some for the same day or tomorrow, if you go to our website or app you can place an order for the items you need :). ”