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Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 18 October 2018

Kaspersky Lab founder denies security products being used by Russia for spying

'The US government has been looking through our products for years. Have they found anything? No. They haven’t found anything because there is nothing to find.'
Eugene Kaspersky, the founder of Kaspersky Lab, says the company had nothing to hide. Delores Johnson / The National
Eugene Kaspersky, the founder of Kaspersky Lab, says the company had nothing to hide. Delores Johnson / The National

Eugene Kaspersky has denied US allegations that Kaspersky Lab security products have been used by the Russian government to spy on domestic computer networks.

National Security Agency (NSA) director Mike Rogers told a US Senate Intelligence committee on Thursday that the agency was reviewing government use of Kaspersky Lab software, amid concern that it could be used by Russia to spy on Americans or to launch cyber attacks on US computer networks.

“The US government has been looking through our products for years. Have they found anything? No. They haven’t found anything because there is nothing to find,” Mr Kaspersky, the founder of Kaspersky Lab, told The National in an interview in Abu Dhabi.

The heads of the NSA, CIA, FBI, Defense Intelligence Agency and National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency, told the senate intelligence committee that they did not recommend using Kaspersky’s software.

But UK-based security expert Graham Cluley said that there was little concrete evidence of wrongdoing against Kaspersky Lab.

“If Kaspersky was somehow in bed with the-powers-that-be in Moscow, then why would it have published detailed research on Russian-borne cybercrime campaigns like Epic Turla (sometimes known as Uroburos) and Red October?” said Mr Clulely in a recent blog post at the weekend.

“If someone genuinely believes Kaspersky’s software is somehow secretly spying on selected customers, now’s the time to put up or shut up. Show us the evidence.”

Mr Kaspersky told The National that the company had nothing to hide.

“I’m very happy that the FBI and others are doing the free audit of our software,” he said.

“But it’s very hard to find a black cat in a dark room in a case where there is no cat there.”

jeverington@thenational.ae

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