More than 40,000 travellers may have been affected by a cyber attack on the website of the UK’s leading travel trade group.
The Association of British Travel Agents (ABTA) says around 1,000 files were accessed during the breach of its site, and could include the personal identity information of individuals who have made complaints about ABTA-registered travel agents.
According to the BBC, ABTA said the attack might have affected some 43,000 people, and has set up a dedicated helpline. The group has also alerted police and relevant government authorities.
"It is extremely disappointing that our web server, managed for ABTA through a third party web developer and hosting company, was compromised and we are taking every step we can to help those affected," said ABTA CEO Mark Tanzer, who also personally apologised for the "anxiety and concern" the organisation caused its customers and members.
The British equivalent of the Australian Federation of Travel Agents (AFTA), ABTA says the type of data that may have been accessed included:
-Email addresses and encrypted passwords of ABTA customers and members registered on the website
-Contact details of customers of ABTA members who have used the website to register a complaint
-Data uploaded to support a complaint made about an ABTA member since 11 January 2017
-Data uploaded by ABTA members in support of their membership
ABTA has since advised customers and members to change their passwords as a "precautionary measure", the BBC reported
Those affected were also told to actively monitor their bank accounts, social media and email accounts and “remain vigilant”.