Published: Tue, May 15, 2018
Finance | By Claude Patterson

Kaspersky shifts all data for Australian customers from Russian Federation to Switzerland

Kaspersky shifts all data for Australian customers from Russian Federation to Switzerland

U.S. government workers were ordered to stop using Kaspersky anti-virus software. The opening of a new data center in Zurich is the latest stage in this plan, and will apparently see a number of "core processes" moved from Russian Federation.

To improve transparency and integrity, the company said it is also looking for an independent third-party based in Switzerland to supervise its operations in order to assure customers that their data can not be compromised by the Russian state. The move is part of the company's Global Transparency Initiative which came in response to concerns about ties to the Russian government.

"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".

The move follows controversy in the United States previous year when the federal government removed Kaspersky from its list of approved vendors, weeks after senior U.S. intelligence agency and law enforcement officials expressed concerns about the safety of its software.

The move from Russian Federation comes months after the USA's Department of Homeland Security (DHS) issued an order that banned Kaspersky Lab products from being used by federal agencies.

Dutch justice minister Ferd Grapperhaus told MPs in a letter that the cabinet had chose to stop using anti-virus software produced by Kaspersky Lab, in order to guarantee national security.

By the end of 2019, Kaspersky Lab will have established a data centre in Zurich and in this facility will store and process all information for users in Europe, North America, Singapore, Australia, Japan and South Korea, with more countries to follow.

Kaspersky Security Network is the cloud-based system through which Kaspersky collects data from the computers of its business customers, in order to spot and combat threats.

The transparency center will also host the company's "build infrastructure" that Kaspersky uses to assemble and manage its products.

By the end of 2018, the firm's security products and threat detection rule databases will be assembled and signed with a Swiss digital signature.

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

As for the third-party organization that will review Kaspersky's source code and keep an eye on its employees' access to customers' metadata, Kaspersky said it "supports the creation of a new, non-profit organization to take on this responsibility, not just for the company, but for other partners and members who wish to join".

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.

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