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JBS says it paid $11 million ransom after cyberattack

JBS USA on Thursday announced it had paid hackers “the equivalent of $11 million in ransom” to resolve a cyberattack that forced the meat company to shut down.

State of play: The payment was made in bitcoin, per the Wall Street Journal. The company said it made the decision to pay the ransom after consulting with “internal IT professionals and third-party cybersecurity experts.”

  • JBS USA CEO Andre Nogueira said the payment had been made after most JBS plants were up and running again, the Journal reports.
  • The FBI have said they believe that the Russia-linked REvil ransomware group was behind the attack.

What they’re saying: “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,” Nogueira said in a statement.

The big picture: The FBI has urged companies and organizations targeted by hackers to avoid paying ransoms, noting that there’s no guarantee it will end the cyberattack, per Bloomberg.

  • Earlier this week, the Justice Department said U.S. investigators recovered $2.3 million worth of cryptocurrency paid as a ransom to the cybercrime group responsible for the attack that shut down Colonial Pipeline last month.