The beer giant wants to be ready “to defend against anything coming."

By Mike Pomranz
June 14, 2019
Joe Raedle/Getty Images

A common refrain from security experts is that many of today’s biggest threats are online. In some ways, it’s common sense: You only bump into a handful of people every day who can steal your wallet, but anyone in the world with a computer and a bit of know-how can try to steal your identity whenever they want. For this reason, many companies that you might not consider traditionally vulnerable to cyberattacks — so not just banks or tech firms — are beefing up their cybersecurity teams too… including the world’s largest beer producer.

Anheuser-Busch InBev announced this week that the international beer giant is opening its own dedicated cybersecurity unit in Israel to protect itself from what Reuters described as a “growing number” of attacks. As most Americans are aware, Anheuser-Busch InBev is the parent company behind some of the country’s most popular beers like Bud Light and Budweiser, but the massive company has somewhere around 500 different brands in its global portfolio overall — a reminder that AB InBev has plenty at stake.

At first, your gut instinct might be that no one wants to steal the recipe for Busch Light, but this heightened security is about a lot more than just protecting proprietary information. “With increasing digitalization, we have to be prepared to defend against anything coming,” Luis Veronesi, who serves as AB InBev’s vice president of global security and compliance, told Reuters. That includes things like “financially motivated” attacks (presumably like ransomware) or boarder attempts at disrupting the business for any number of reasons (even the lols, perhaps?)

AB InBev recently established a tech presence in Israel anyway, acquiring the startup Weissbeerger last year to help track beer sales and consumption. Reuters says that Weissbeerger follows that data by connecting beer taps to the internet. Hey, that right there sounds like a potential vulnerability allowing hackers to download beer directly to their computers! Keep an eye on that one, guys.

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