FBI says Russia-linked group behind JBS hack
The FBI has identified a Russia-linked group as the entity behind the cyberattack on the meat producing group JBS USA.
“We have attributed the JBS attack to REvil and Sodinokibi and are working diligently to bring the threat actors to justice,” the FBI wrote in a statement on Wednesday.
“We continue to focus our efforts on imposing risk and consequences and holding the responsible cyber actors accountable,” the FBI added.
REvil and Sodinokibi have been described by experts as different names for the same group and past reporting has linked the hackers to Russia.
JBS USA, one of the largest meat suppliers in the country, was the target of a cyberattack on Sunday that impacted its operations, forcing all of the company’s beef plants in the U.S. to shut down.
The attack comes just weeks after Colonial Pipeline was forced to temporarily shutter operations after it was the target of a cyberattack.
The FBI identified the criminal ransomware gang DarkSide as responsible for the attack on the Colonial Pipeline network.
Last month, President Biden said the White House had “strong reason to believe” that the hackers were based in Russia, but not backed by the Russian government.
The FBI’s confirmation that the JBS cyberattack was perpetrated by a Russia-linked group comes after the White House on Tuesday said the attack likely originated from Russia.
White House principal deputy press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said the White House was “engaging directly with the Russian government on this matter, and delivering the message that responsible states do not harbor ransomware criminals.”
President Biden and Russian President Vladimir Putin are scheduled to meet in person next month, the first face-to-face meeting between the two leaders since Biden took office.
White House press secretary Jen Psaki on Wednesday said the White House expects the cyberattack to be one of the issues Biden discusses with Putin.
When asked about potential responses and retaliations, Psaki said “we’re not taking any options off the table, in terms of how we may respond.”
“But, of course, there’s an internal policy review process to consider that. We’re in direct touch with the Russians, as well, to convey our concerns about these reports,” she added.
In Wednesday’s statement, the FBI said combating cybercrime is one of its “highest priorities.”
“A cyber attack on one is an attack on us all,” the bureau added.
Updated at 7:01 p.m.