FBI says ransomware attacks have tripled in last year, urges companies not to pay

FBI Director Christopher Wray said the agency is investigating over 100 ransomware attacks and said the problem is worsening. He said paying the ransom “encourages more of this kind of activity.”
2:08 | 06/10/21

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Transcript for FBI says ransomware attacks have tripled in last year, urges companies not to pay
Next tonight, we have new reporting here on those crippling cyber attacks affecting gas prices and the U.S. Meat supply. Today, FBI director Christopher WRAY was grilled on capitol hill, pressed on security, after both companies paid ransom to russian-based hackers. And that second attack, that meat producer, jbs, we have now learned paid $11 million in ransom. U.S. Authorities tonight pleading with U.S. Companies not to pay. Here's our chief justice correspondent Pierre Thomas now. Reporter: Tonight, the FBI director with a stark warning. Ransomware attacks costing U.S companies millions have tripled in the last year and that may be just the beginning. So the scale of this is something that I don't think this country has ever seen anything quite like it. And it's going to get much worse. Reporter: WRAY says the FBI is investigating more than 100 ransomware attacks, each case with dozens, if not hundreds, of victims. And he's urging companies not to gif into extortion. Companies should not pay the ransom for a number of reasons. It encourages more of this kind of activity. You could pay the ransom and not get your system back. Reporter: U.S. Companies have been under incredible pressure. Food giant jbs now confirming it paid $11 million to cybercriminals after a ransomware attack closed its meat plants across the U.S. This after colonial pipeline paid $4.4 million in ransom after an attack that ended up closing gas stations along the east coast. But the homeland security soak secretary in an exclusive interview at his agency's cyber command center said companies are being put in an impossible situation. We've lost $350 million in ransomware alone this year. This is really hard. So, what are you supposed to do if you have one of these attacks? Pierre with us here in New York. I know authorities urging companies not to pay the ransom. But what are they doing to try to ramp up security? Reporter: David, many economies are not doing enough, but some are getting the message. Some hiring their own professional hackers to hunt for weaknesses. All right, Pierre Thomas, great to have you in New York, by the way. Thank you, Pierre. There was one more note on

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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