A cyber attack has hit more than 300 Spar convenience stores across the north of England with some forced to close their doors.
The attack on Sunday targeted James Hall & Company in Preston, Lancashire, which operates Spar’s tills and IT systems.
Shops have not been able to take card payments with those remaining open taking cash only.
A spokesman for Lancashire Police said the force was investigating.
A Spar spokesman said: “We are working to resolve this situation as quickly as possible.
“We apologise for the inconvenience this is causing our customers and we are working as quickly as possible to resolve the situation.”
This isn’t the first time a supermarket chain has been brought to its knees by a cyber attack.
In July hackers caused 500 Co-op stores in Sweden to close as tills and self-service machines were taken down.
Similarly, it was the supermarket’s IT supplier that was hit with ransomware.
The question for James Hall is now the one all cyber attack victims dread – shall we pay criminals to get our shops back online?
But of course for the hundreds of thousands of Spar customers affected by the hack the more pressing question is when will their local stores open again.