Kapersky Lab software is ordered wiped from government computers

Russian cybersecurity firm is being investigated by the FBI for possible links to Russian security services


The federal government moved Wednesday to wipe from its computer systems any software made by a prominent Russian cybersecurity firm, Kaspersky Lab, that is being investigated by the FBI for possible links to Russian security services.  

The concerns surrounding Kaspersky, whose software is sold throughout the United States, are long-standing. The FBI, aided by U.S. spies, has for years been trying to determine whether Kaspersky’s senior executives are working with Russian military and intelligence, according to current and former U.S. officials.  

The FBI has also been investigating whether Kaspersky software, including its well-regarded anti-virus programs, contains back doors that could allow Russian intelligence access to computers on which it is running. The company denies the allegations.  

The officials, all of whom spoke on the condition of anonymity because the inquiries are classified, would not provide details of the information they have collected on Kaspersky. But on Wednesday, Elaine C. Duke, the acting secretary of Homeland Security, ordered federal agencies to develop plans to remove Kaspersky software from government systems in the next 90 days.  

Wednesday’s announcement is the latest instance of the apparent disconnect between the Trump White House, which has often downplayed the threat of Russian interference to the country’s infrastructure, and front-line U.S. law enforcement and intelligence officials, who are engaged in a perpetual shadow war against Moscow-directed operatives.  

Kaspersky’s business in the United States appears to be the latest casualty in those spy wars. Best Buy announced last week that it was pulling Kaspersky Lab’s cybersecurity products from its shelves and website, and the Senate is voting this week on a defense-spending bill that would ban Kaspersky Lab products from being used by U.S. government agencies.  

Kaspersky is considered one of the foremost cybersecurity research firms in the world and has considerable expertise in designing anti-virus software and tools to uncover spyware used by Western intelligence services. The company was founded by Eugene V. Kaspersky, who attended a high school that trained Russian spies and later wrote software for the Soviet army before founding Kaspersky Lab in 1997.


Reader Comments ...


Next Up in Politics

Yoga class Sunday in West Palm will raise money for Venezuela
Yoga class Sunday in West Palm will raise money for Venezuela

As part of a worldwide event, local Venezuelans are hosting an outdoor yoga class Sunday in West Palm Beach to raise money and awareness of the humanitarian crisis in their home country. The one-hour class, scheduled for 10 a.m. at the Meyer Amphitheater, is free, but organizers are asking participants to donate $20 online at the Venezuelan Foundation...
Dave Aronberg, courted by Dems for U.S. House seat, weighs in on Dem primary
Dave Aronberg, courted by Dems for U.S. House seat, weighs in on Dem primary

  Democratic congressional candidate Lauren Baer picks up an endorsement from Palm Beach County State Attorney Dave Aronberg. Palm Beach County State Attorney Dave Aronberg, who has been courted in the past by national Democrats to run for Congress, is endorsing Lauren Baer in the Democratic primary for a...
Democrats’ newest midterm pitch: A crackdown on corruption
Democrats’ newest midterm pitch: A crackdown on corruption

Democrats plan to highlight allegations of corruption surrounding the Trump administration — and a legislative agenda to prevent future abuses — as they continue rolling out their party platform ahead of November's midterm elections.  The first planks of the "A Better Deal" platform, released last year, focused on the party's...
Trump to meet S. Korea’s Moon amid signs that partnership is faltering on N. Korea
Trump to meet S. Korea’s Moon amid signs that partnership is faltering on N. Korea

President Donald Trump will meet with South Korean President Moon Jae-in at the White House on Tuesday amid signs that his close partnership with Seoul in brokering a historic nuclear deal with North Korea's Kim Jong Un is faltering.  Moon's top aides presented Trump in March with the invitation from Kim to hold the unprecedented summit, an offer...
Democrat Chris King seeks the ‘bold and progressive’ lane in governor’s race
Democrat Chris King seeks the ‘bold and progressive’ lane in governor’s race

Democratic gubernatorial candidate Chris King campaigning west of Delray Beach on Monday. (George Bennett/The Palm Beach Post) WEST DELRAY — As he tries to break out of a crowded Democratic gubernatorial primary field, Winter Park businessman Chris King — the only candidate who has never run for elected office —...
More Stories