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REvil Behind JBS Ransomware Attack: FBI

Officials attribute the attack to REvil/Sodinokibi and say they are working to bring the threat actors to justice.

The FBI has attributed the recent ransomware attack targeting meat supplier JBS to the "REvil and Sodinokibi" ransomware, listing the two names typically used to describe the same threat.

REvil, also known as Sodinokibi, was first identified in April 2019 and has since become a major ransomware-as-a-service threat targeting enterprise organizations. Earlier this year, Kaspersky reported the group had demanded the highest ransoms in 2021.

JBS determined it was the victim of a cyberattack on May 30; White House officials later confirmed it was a ransomware attack and attributed it to "a criminal organization likely based in Russia." The attack affected some servers supporting JBS' North American and Australian IT systems but did not affect its backup servers, officials said in a release disclosing the attack.

"We have attributed the JBS attack to REvil and Sodinokibi and are working diligently to bring the threat actors to justice," FBI officials wrote in a release. "We continue to focus our efforts on imposing risk and consequences and holding the responsible cyber actors accountable." Organizations that fall victim to cyberattacks are encouraged to contact the FBI.

News of the FBI's attribution arrives the same day that Anne Neuberger, deputy assistant to President Joe Biden and deputy national security advisor for cyber and emerging technology, published an open letter to enterprise organizations, urging them to take steps to defend against ransomware given "the number and size of ransomware incidents have increased significantly."

While ransomware has become a greater focus on a federal level, Neuberger discussed how the private sector also has a responsibility to protect against the threat. She urged businesses to implement practices from the recent executive order: Back up data, system images, and configurations, test them, and keep them offline; update and patch systems; test incident response plans; segment their networks; and test the security of their systems.

Read the full FBI statement and Neuberger's full open letter for more information.

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