Published: Sat, September 16, 2017
Hi-Tech | By Merle Christensen

Russian Federation says Kaspersky removal in U.S. delays bilateral ties recovery

Russian Federation says Kaspersky removal in U.S. delays bilateral ties recovery

"The risk that the Russian government, whether acting on its own or in collaboration with Kaspersky, could capitalize on access provided by Kaspersky products to compromise federal information and information systems directly implicates U.S. national security..."

Kaspersky has more than 400 million customers worldwide, but it has never succeeded in becoming a major supplier to the U.S. government.

The U.S. government is taking steps to remove Kaspersky Labs products from its computers.

"The risk that the Russian government, whether acting on its own or in collaboration with Kaspersky, could capitalize on access provided by Kaspersky products to compromise federal information and information systems directly implicates USA national security".

The order applies only to civilian government agencies and not the Pentagon, but US intelligence leaders said earlier this year that Kaspersky was already generally not allowed on military networks.

Nicholas Weaver, a computer security researcher at the University of California, Berkeley, called the USA government decision "prudent"; he had argued for such a step in July. Kaspersky expressed disappointment at the United States decision and claimed the company was being used as a pawn in a political game. The retail giant Best Buy has said it would stop selling the company's software.

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Kaspersky said it is not subject to the Russian laws cited in the directive and said information received by the company is protected in accordance with legal requirements and stringent industry standards, including encryption.

However, the company has not been able to shake off the allegations. "Applaud DHS for heeding my call to remove all Kaspersky products from fed agencies".

The Committee for Science, Space and Technology of the House of Representatives invited general director and co-founder of Kaspersky Lab Eugene Kaspersky to testify about the security of the technical solutions that his company provides, Reuters reports.

The chief executive of the software company, Eugene Kaspersky, is a mathematical engineer who attended a KGB-sponsored school and once worked for Russia's Ministry of Defense.

"While we continue to suffer from these meritless accusations, the US Government continues to take actions against our products".

The government has suggested that the goal of this hearing is to conduct "oversight of the cybersecurity posture of the federal government, and examine the extent to which the federal government utilizes your company's [Kaspersky] products". As a result, he expects most companies to find another alternative to Kaspersky.

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