Meat Supplier JBS Paid Ransomware Gang $11 Million

An employee at a money changer counts USD 100 bills in Manila on October 25, 2012. AFP PHO

JBS, the largest beef supplier in the world, reportedly paid ransomware hackers who breached its computer networks about $11 million to regain access to its systems.

NBC News reports that JBS, the largest beef supplier in the world, paid ransomware hackers around $11 million to regain access to its computer networks. Breitbart News reported last month that a cyberattack crippled JBS, the largest meat supplier in the world. The company is also Australia’s largest meat and food processing company with 47 facilities across the country including abattoirs, feedlots, and meat processing sites.

JBS USA said in a statement that it was the target of an “organized cybersecurity attack,” affecting some of its servers supporting its North American and Australian IT systems. The FBI claims that the cyberattack was perpetrated by the Russian hacking group REvil, also known as Sodinokibi.

REvil has perpetrated multiple ransomware attacks in an attempt to receive millions of dollars in payments from affected companies. It has targeted hundreds of businesses including Travelex, Acer, and Apple supplier Quanta.

In a statement, JBS indicated that while it was able to regain access to most of its systems without REvil’s help, it chose to pay to keep its files safe. The company said in a statement: “At the time of payment, the vast majority of the company’s facilities were operational,” adding that it “made the decision to mitigate any unforeseen issues related to the attack and ensure no data was exfiltrated.”

Charles Carmakal, the chief technology officer at cybersecurity firm Mandiant, commented on the ransom payment stating: “For an organization like theirs, it feels like it’s a pretty common extortion demand. For bigger organizations, you’ll tend to see eight-figure extortion demands.” He added: “Sometimes, you’ll see what I believe are really large demands, going up to 40, 45, 50 million. Most people don’t want to pay that much and will try to negotiate it down as best they can.”

JBS CEO Andre Nogueira commented: “This was a very difficult decision to make for our company and for me personally. However, we felt this decision had to be made to prevent any potential risk for our customers.”

Read more at NBC News here.

Lucas Nolan is a reporter for Breitbart News covering issues of free speech and online censorship. Follow him on Twitter @LucasNolan or contact via secure email at the address


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