Published: Tue, May 15, 2018
Economy | By

Dutch govt bans use of Kaspersky Lab products

Dutch govt bans use of Kaspersky Lab products

The move is part of the company's Global Transparency Initiative which came in response to concerns about ties to the Russian government.

The idea had first been mooted in March this year, and the Swiss facility The facility is to be one of a series of "transparency centres" located around the world, and will be used to collect and analyse files identified as suspicious from the computers of tens of millions of Kaspersky customers based in the United States and European Union. The Dutch Government announced a similar move this week.

The Transparency Center will be located in Zurich and will house servers that store data on Kaspersky customers across Europe, North America, Australia, Japan, South Korea, and Singapore.

Announced in October past year, the Global Transparency Initiative is an effort to re-establish both trust and reputation in the wake of accusations that Kaspersky Lab's operations were tied to the Russian government.

Kaspersky announced earlier today plans to move the user data of most of its customers to a "Transparency Center" in Switzerland, along with its "software assembly line".

Last October, the Moscow-headquartered company launched a worldwide transparency effort after the USA claimed that the company had given Russian security agencies backdoor access to secretive data.

Kaspersky Lab is arranging for the data storage and processing, software assembly, and source code to be independently supervised by a third party qualified to conduct technical software reviews.

In 2017, the US Department of Homeland Security (DHS) ordered federal agencies to stop using Kaspersky products and removed the company from a list of approved vendors.

Kaspersky has repeatedly denied these allegations, but the company claims that it is working with others to "address growing challenges of industry fragmentation" and "a breakdown of trust".

Kaspersky Lab chief executive Eugene Kaspersky said: "In a rapidly changing industry such as ours, we have to adapt to the evolving needs of our clients, stakeholders and partners".

"Transparency is one such need, and that is why we've chose to redesign our infrastructure and move our data processing facilities to Switzerland".

Kaspersky Lab said part of the new facility would be based in Zurich, and the company had chosen Switzerland for its "policy of neutrality" and strong data protection laws. Before the end of 2018, Kaspersky Lab products and threat detection rule databases (AV databases) will start to be assembled and signed with a digital signature in Switzerland, before being distributed to the endpoints of customers worldwide.

"This approach will further show that generation after generation of Kaspersky Lab products were built and used for one objective only: protecting the company's customers from cyber threats", the company statement said.

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