Mere weeks after the cyber-attack that closed down the Colonial Pipeline, the largest global meat producer, JBS, was forced to halt operations due to a cyber-attack they were struck by over the weekend.
JBS is the United States’ largest beef producer, and reported that its servers in North America and Australia were affected by the attack.
JBS reports that they “took immediate action” by reaching out to “third-party experts” and “notifying authorities” in order to quickly “resolve the situation.” JBS added that the backup servers did not get attacked and that they hope to restore functionality soon.
The incident has provoked fears amongst many at the prospect of a global meat shortage.
JBS’s five largest U.S. plants process 22,500 cattle per day, but have halted operations following the attack against the company’s computer network. The outage wipes out 20% of America’s total beef production, with slaughter operations in Australia getting put on hold as well. Canada also had to idle operation of one of their beef plants.
While JBS has declined to release details of exactly how many plants were put on hold, the prospect of global shutdowns has already upset agricultural markets around the world. Concerns have also been raised by the two most recent attacks about food security as hackers increasingly target crucial infrastructure systems.
JBS reported to the U.S. government that the attack was a ransomware event, probably from a Russian crime group. White House spokeswoman Karine Jean-Pierre said that the White House is offering assistance to the company and that the Department of Agriculture is in close contact with JBS at this time.
The company plainly stated that resolving the problem “will take time” and therefore “certain transactions” may be delayed.
Author: Bryan Kennedy