June 10, 2021
JBS USA paid US$11 million ransom to "prevent potential risk for customers", says CEO
JBS USA confirmed in a June 9 press statement that it paid the equivalent of US$11 million in ransom in response to the criminal hack against its operations.
At the time of payment, the vast majority of the company's facilities were operational. In consultation with internal IT professionals and third-party cybersecurity experts, the company made the decision to mitigate any unforeseen issues related to the attack and ensure no data was exfiltrated.
"This was a very difficult decision to make for our company and for me personally," said Andre Nogueira, chief executive officer of JBS USA. "However, we felt this decision had to be made to prevent any potential risk for our customers."
The FBI stated that the cyberattack was made by one of the most sophisticated cybercriminal groups in the world. JBS USA's ability to quickly resolve the issues resulting from the attack was due to its cybersecurity protocols, redundant systems and encrypted backup servers. The company spends more than US$200 million annually on IT and employs more than 850 IT professionals globally.
Third-party forensic investigations are still ongoing, and no final determinations have been made. Preliminary investigation results confirm that no company, customer or employee data was compromised.