JBS paid equivalent of $11M in ransomware attack

The meatpacking firm JBS USA paid a ransom equivalent to $11 million after it fell victim to a cyberattack.

The company's U.S. CEO said on Wednesday they made the payment to protect their customers.

Last week's cyberattack led to the suspension of cattle slaughtering at all of JBS' U.S. plants for a day.

The company produces nearly a quarter of America's beef, and there were fears that the disruption would threaten food supply chains and further inflate food prices.

The attack also disrupted JBS operations in Australia.

Ransom software works by encrypting victims' data.

Typically hackers will offer the victim a key in return for cryptocurrency payments.

The CEO of JBS USA, Andre Nogueira said:

"This was a very difficult decision to make for our company and for me personally."

"However, we felt this decision had to be made to prevent any potential risk for our customers."

The FBI said earlier this month it was investigating about 100 different types of ransomware.

The cyberattack on JBS followed one last month on Colonial Pipeline, the largest pipeline in the U.S.

That attack disrupted fuel delivery for several days in the U.S. Southeast.

A Russia-linked hacker group has been blamed for both attacks.