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#Wetherspoons Become the Latest Victim of Widening #Hacking Epidemic

Talk Talk, Carphone Warehouse, JP Morgan, Home Depot, Ashley Madison. These are a but a few of the sites and companies which have fallen victim to large scale data breaches in the past year. The rate of these attacks has been steadily intensifying for the past 7 or 8 years and now we have another victim - JD Wetherspoon.

That's right, the bar/restaurant chain have tucked another controversy under their belts to go along with their hideous instant meals and tendency to buy up alcohol that's on the verge of expiring. Sorry if I've put you off going there again with that, it's for the best I promise. This one isn't strictly their fault, and it's hard to figure out exactly why they were targeted, maybe they barred that guy from Mr. Robot.

Like many of the other recent large scale hacks, it's a data theft issue. Supposedly, the details of a staggering 656,723 customers were lifted from their old website. Anyone who has submitted a 'Contact Us' form, signed up to their newsletter (apparently there is one), purchased a voucher between 2009 and 2014 or most worryingly, signed up to use the in-house wi-fi and opted to receive company updates is at risk of having had their details stolen. For most of these people names, phone numbers, dates of birth and email addresses are in danger of having been exposed.

More disturbingly, 100 customers who bought vouchers have had their credit/debit card details lifted. According to Spoons, the data they actually accessed was 'extremely limited', but still enough to cause some level of concern. The chain sent an email explaining the situation to customers on Thursday, assuring everyone that it was under investigation. They were only alerted to the breach on Tuesday, but the hack itself actually happened back in June.

In terms of scale, this one doesn't come anywhere close to something like the JP Morgan scandal, which affected 76 million account holders, but it just goes to show how indiscriminate these attacks can be. For Spoons patrons (if such people do exist), there is some reassurance going forward. The hack targeted their old site; their new one is far more sophisticated, and as a result of this they're pledging to do everything in their power to stop it from happening again.

Callum is a film school graduate who is now making a name for himself as a journalist and content writer. His vices include flat whites and 90s hip-hop. Follow him @CallumAtSMF

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#Wetherspoons Become the Latest Victim of Widening #Hacking Epidemic Reviewed by Unknown on Sunday, December 06, 2015 Rating: 5

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