Tesco seems to have got its online operations back on track after suffering the impact of a cyber attack this weekend.

The retailer will now be totting up the cost of missed sales, which will be no small sum. Orders through its website usually hit between £15m and £20m each day.

A company of Tesco’s size can swallow that sort of hit relatively comfortably. But what is not yet known is whether the supermarket will be hit further down the line if its system proves to have been compromised, or customer data accessed.

“There is no reason to believe that this issue impacts customer data and we continue to take ongoing action to make sure all data stays safe,” said a Tesco spokesman. But as several analysts have pointed out, the total fallout of these instances is not often known until long after the initial event.

The sad truth is that this attack on Tesco comes as no surprise. Just last month, The Grocer ran a feature on the growing threat that cybercriminals are posing to the UK food and drink industry.

In the piece, Matthew Gribben, CTO of Signal Vision and a former GCHQ cybersecurity officer, said: “The UK supply chain is incredibly vulnerable and if anybody thinks otherwise they are kidding themselves. It is simply a matter of when, not if, an attack has a national impact.”

This latest attempt to hack Tesco suggests the criminals will simply keep coming. It must serve as a real-time warning to all food and drink operators to get their cyber security in order, especially at a time when there is a real rush among companies towards even greater digitisation.

This, in essence, means there are more computers and devices controlling the workings of the food and drink industry. By the same token, there are more targets for criminals to attack. At the same time, we have more people working from home using personal networks to carry out business, which again only adds vulnerability.

Companies need to prepare for the worst when it comes to beefing up cybersecurity, and at the same time maintain good cyber hygiene. It’s tricky to ward off these ever more sophisticated threats while keeping up with the growth of online – but, as this incident shows, a security breach comes at a high price.