FBI warns of ransomware attacks targeting food and agriculture sector as White House pushes for proactive measures

The FBI sent out a notice warning companies in the the food and agriculture sector to watch out for ransomware attacks aiming to disrupt supply chains. The FBI note said ransomware groups are seeking to disrupt operations, cause financial loss, and negatively impact the food supply chain.

Ransomware may impact businesses across the sector, from small farms to large producers, processors and manufacturers, and markets and restaurants. Cybercriminal threat actors exploit network vulnerabilities to exfiltrate data and encrypt systems in a sector that is increasingly reliant on smart technologies, industrial control systems, and internet-based automation systems, the FBI said. 

Food and agriculture businesses victimized by ransomware suffer significant financial loss resulting from ransom payments, loss of productivity, and remediation costs. Companies may also experience the loss of proprietary information and personally identifiable information and may suffer reputational damage resulting from a ransomware attack.

The notice goes on to explain that the food and agriculture sector has faced an increasing number of attacks in recent months as ransomware groups target critical industries with large attack surfaces.

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