Dole, a global provider of fresh fruits and vegetables to over 75 countries, has disclosed that an undisclosed number of its employees were impacted in a cyberattack last month. The company, which employs around 38,000 people worldwide, made the revelation in an annual report filed with the US Securities and Exchange Commission on Wednesday.
In the report, Dole confirmed that the ransomware attack it suffered in February led to unauthorized access to employee information. The company said that it had taken prompt steps to contain the attack, retained the services of cybersecurity experts, and notified law enforcement. Although the attack had a limited impact on operations, Dole was forced to shut down production plants across North America at the time, and customers complained about delays and shortages of Dole products on store shelves for over a week. A leaked memo to American stores suggested that the company had implemented a crisis management protocol, including a “Manual Backup Program,” which would enable the company to resume operations slowly.