A ‘TARGETED’ cyber attack has hit Oxfordshire-based appliance firm Smeg UK.

The premium domestic appliance brand, which has its headquarters in Abingdon, was forced to ‘totally’ shut down its systems over the weekend for protection.

It urged customers to be patient as it tried to resolve the problems, although said it did not believe any customer information has been ‘exposed’ to the hackers.

A statement on the Smeg UK website and its Twitter feed Saturday said: “Unfortunately we have been the victim of a targeted cyber attack and as such have taken immediate steps to totally shut our systems down to protect our customers and ourselves.

“At this time we have no reason to believe any of our customer information has been exposed.

“We have a specialist team working around the clock to resolve this issue and get us operational ASAP.

“We will update our social media feeds as soon as this is the case. We thank you for your patience at this time.”

The company posted an online alert to customers stating there was a problem on September 12.

Smeg, which brands itself as “technology with style”, is known for its Italian-inspired cooking appliances ranging from toasters and kettles to ovens and refrigerators.

The business was established in 1989, has its headquarters based on the site of the old MG factory and supplies over 750 products including ovens, hobs, range cookers and washing machines.