The FBI despatched out a discover warning firms within the the meals and agriculture sector to be careful for ransomware assaults aiming to disrupt provide chains. The FBI word stated ransomware teams are in search of to “disrupt operations, trigger monetary loss, and negatively influence the meals provide chain.”
“Ransomware might influence companies throughout the sector, from small farms to massive producers, processors and producers, and markets and eating places. Cybercriminal menace actors exploit community vulnerabilities to exfiltrate information and encrypt techniques in a sector that’s more and more reliant on good applied sciences, industrial management techniques, and internet-based automation techniques,” the FBI stated.
“Meals and agriculture companies victimized by ransomware endure important monetary loss ensuing from ransom funds, lack of productiveness, and remediation prices. Firms might also expertise the lack of proprietary info and personally identifiable info and will endure reputational injury ensuing from a ransomware assault.”
The discover goes on to elucidate that the meals and agriculture sector has confronted an rising variety of assaults in latest months as ransomware teams goal important industries with massive assault surfaces.
Lots of the greatest meals firms now use an array of IoT gadgets and good expertise of their processes. The FBI famous that bigger agricultural companies are focused as a result of they’ll afford to pay larger ransoms and smaller entities are attacked due to their incapability to afford high-quality cybersecurity.
“From 2019 to 2020, the common ransom demand doubled and the common cyber insurance coverage payout elevated by 65 % from 2019 to 2020. The very best noticed ransom demand in 2020 was $23 million USD, based on a personal business report. Based on the 2020 IC3 Report, IC3 acquired 2,474 complaints recognized as ransomware with adjusted losses of over $29.1 million throughout all sectors,” the FBI stated.
“Separate research have proven 50-80 % of victims that paid the ransom skilled a repeat ransomware assault by both the identical or completely different actors. Though cyber criminals use a wide range of strategies to contaminate victims with ransomware, the commonest technique of an infection are electronic mail phishing campaigns, Distant Desktop Protocol vulnerabilities, and software program vulnerabilities.”
The discover goes on to record a number of assaults on the meals and agriculture sector since November, together with a Sodinokibi/REvil ransomware assault on a US bakery firm, the assault on international meat processor JBS in Might, a March 2021 assault on a US beverage firm and a January assault on a US farm that precipitated losses of roughly $9 million.
JBS ended up paying an $11 million ransom to the REvil ransomware group after the assault precipitated meat shortages throughout the US, Australia and different international locations.
The FBI additionally cited an assault in November on a US-based worldwide meals and agriculture enterprise that was hit with a $40 million ransom demand from the OnePercent Group. The corporate was capable of get better from backups and didn’t pay the ransom.
The discover lists quite a few measures meals and agriculture sector firms can take to guard themselves, together with having backups, community segmentation, multifactor authentication and proactive monitoring of distant entry/RDP logs.
The discover got here the identical week as CISA urged firms to be cautious of lengthy weekends contemplating what number of assaults have taken place on holidays this yr. Whereas they’d no particular menace intel, the discover warned that menace actors know IT groups can be touring or out of the workplace over the approaching Labor Day weekend.
White Home deputy nationwide safety adviser Anne Neuberger spoke to the press on Thursday urging firms to seek for indicators of compromise earlier than the lengthy weekend and create motion plans within the occasion of an assault.
“We wish to elevate consciousness and this want for consciousness is especially for important infrastructure homeowners and operators who function important companies for People,” Neuberger stated.
“Organizations and people ought to be on alert now as a result of criminals generally lay their steps prematurely and start their planning.”