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Fishing website becomes phishing website

Fishing website becomes phishing website

A timely reminder of the importance of securing a website has been given by Britain’s biggest chain of fishing shops, with some unsuspecting visitors to its website being directed to an altogether different pastime.

AnglingDirect.co.uk is a popular site for fishing fanatics, selling angling gear and accessories. Headquartered in Norwich, Angling Direct has around 15 stores in the UK, including some superstores.

But in the last few days, many keen anglers sat in front of their computers with their rod in their hand will have been left disappointed. The company appears to have targeted by hackers, with some visitors directed to the adult website Pornhub.

Those behind the attack have also seized the company’s Twitter account. The below message was tweeted on Sunday evening, claiming the company site had been sold to Pornhub founders MindGeek.


As of Tuesday afternoon, the site remains compromised.

Speaking to the Norwich Evening News, an Angling Direct spokesperson said the company has tasked external cybersecurity experts with looking into the breach and has notified the Information Commissioner’s Office. The representative added that physical Angling Direct stores remain open, and reassured customers that the company does not hold any of their personal data.

The fact that the cybercriminals have managed to intrude on both the company website and Twitter account suggests a possible issue with weak or duplicate passwords. Experts recommend not to use the same password on multiple accounts, since doing this means if malicious operators were to get hold of the password, they could attack all of a company’s online channels.

Many internet users, including businesspeople, also continue to choose poor and obvious passwords, such as their favourite sports team or the names of their children. Cybersecurity boffins now suggest that length is a more important than complexity when it comes to password security, with a password containing three ordinary but unconnected words likely to be far more secure than an unimaginative alphanumeric password like “Pa55w0rd”.

Further tips on what makes a good password can be found in this blog.

For a website that’s as secure as it is user-friendly and aesthetically pleasing, speak to us at Engage Web today.

Content Team Leader at Engage Web
John works for Engage Web as a Content Team Leader and regularly contributes to the website and programmes of his beloved Chester F.C.
John Murray

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