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White House blames Russians for cyberattack on meat producer

A JBS meatpacking plant in Greeley, Colo. Associated Press/Photo by David Zalubowski (file)

White House blames Russians for cyberattack on meat producer

JBS, the world’s largest meat processing company, has resumed most production after a weekend ransomware attack. The company has not discussed whether it paid a ransom to hackers, but said it expected to resume production at all its plants on Thursday. JBS notified the federal government the ransom demand came from the gang REvil, which is believed to operate in Russia.

What can the president do? “The White House is engaging directly with the Russian government on this matter and delivering the message that responsible states do not harbor ransomware criminals,” White House spokeswoman Karine Jean-Pierre said. The FBI is investigating the incident, and the administration is assessing the effects of the attack on the U.S. food supply. JBS is the second-largest producer of beef, pork, and chicken in the U.S. If it were to shut down for even one day, the United States would lose almost a quarter of its beef-processing capacity, according to Trey Malone, an assistant professor of agriculture at Michigan State University.

Dig deeper: Listen to Mary Reichard’s discussion with a supply chain expert about pandemic shortages on The World and Everything in It podcast.

Lynde Langdon

Lynde is a WORLD Digital's managing editor. She is a graduate of World Journalism Institute, the Missouri School of Journalism, and the University of Missouri-St. Louis. Lynde resides with her family in Wichita, Kansas.



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I certainly hope US industry—and various branches of government—are trying to learn all they can from these incidents and beefing up (😄) protection from these incursions into our infrastructure!