Customers of Dixons Carphone have had their financial and personal data compromised following a cyber attack on the firm’s systems. The firm’s shares have dropped more than 6% the announcement.

According to an announcement by the British electronics retailer, there was an attempt to compromise 5.9 million cards in a processing system of Currys PC World and Dixons Travel shops.

The vast majority of these have chip and pin protection, meaning that purchases can’t be made with the details. However, 105,000 cards stored in the system were non-EU issued payment cards, meaning these have now been compromised. Dixons Carphone says it has notified card companies about these breaches.

As well as this, 1.2 million personal records, containing information such as names, addresses and email addresses, have been accessed. The company says that there is no evidence that this breached information has left the system or resulted in any type of fraud. The company is contacting people whose personal data has been accessed.

Dixons Carphone’s response

Alex Baldock, Dixons Carphone Chief Executive, said: “We are extremely disappointed and sorry for any upset this may cause. The protection of our data has to be at the heart of our business, and we’ve fallen short here. We’ve taken action to close off this unauthorised access and though we have currently no evidence of fraud as a result of these incidents, we are taking this extremely seriously.

“We are determined to put this right and are taking steps to do so; we promptly launched an investigation, engaged leading cybersecurity experts, added extra security measures to our systems and will be communicating directly with those affected.”

The company’s financial performance has been poor of late, with a slowdown in new handset sales resulting in plummeting shares across the last few months.

Today’s data breach will likely be a difficult hurdle for CEO Baldock to overcome, given the level of negative press that comes with it and the size of the breach itself. Another British retailer familiar with big scale breaches is TalkTalk, who came under attack in 2015. Its former CEO, Dido Harding, recently issued advice for CEOs on how to behave following these types of attack.

Data breaches caused by cyber attacks are regular news at the moment. Just last week, genealogy site MyHeritage lost 96 million records.