International News

US government orders federal bodies to discontinue software developed by Russia’s Kaspersky Lab

The US Department of Homeland Security said it was concerned about the ties between officials of the cyber security firm and Kremlin intelligence.

The United States Department of Homeland Security on Wednesday ordered all federal agencies and departments to remove security software of Russian company Kaspersky Lab from their networks. The Donald Trump administration claimed that the cyber security firm’s software could jeopardise national security.

The government asked the departments to identify any use or presence of Kaspersky products within the next 30 days and discontinue their use in the next 60 days.

“The department is concerned about the ties between certain Kaspersky officials and Russian intelligence and other government agencies,” Homeland Security said in a statement. “The risk that the Russian government, whether acting on its own or in collaboration with Kaspersky, could capitalise on access provided by Kaspersky products to compromise federal information and information systems directly implicates US national security.”

Kaspersky Lab, however, denied the allegations. “No credible evidence has been presented publicly by anyone or any organisation as the accusations are based on false allegations and inaccurate assumptions,” the company said, according to the BBC.

On July 12, the General Services Administration, which handles the US government’s purchasing contracts, had said that Kaspersky Lab had been removed from its list to “ensure the security of the US government systems and networks”. The company had denied the allegations even then and said it had not helped any government in the world with cyber-espionage efforts.

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