Best Buy stops selling Kaspersky software over possible connection to Russian government

Best Buy, one of the largest electronics retailers in the US, has refused to sell the program produced by Kaspersky Lab due to fears that the producer is influenced by the Russian government, The Verge reports.

A representative of Best Buy confirmed that the decision had been made to take Kaspersky products off the shelves, but did not offer any details.

The company has not conducted its own investigation, its decision to stop selling the products was based on media reports, statements of Congress, and discussions in the industry.

According to Star Tribune, Best Buy is giving customers 45 days to swap Kaspersky Lab products for other software.

On July 12, 2017, The US government banned the purchase of Kaspersky solutions for federal institutions. The White House excluded Kaspersky Lab from the list of software providers approved for use by US state organizations. A representative of the General Services Agency (GSA), which supports the functioning of US federal agencies, explained that this decision was made after a “careful examination” of the situation. The representative reiterated that the GSA strives to “ensure the integrity and security of the US government’s systems and networks”.

The Kremlin called this decision “politicalized”.

In August, Donald Trump’s cybersecurity advisor Rob Joyce warned American users not to install the program Kaspersky Lab. He opposed the use of Kaspersky products in state organizations, local government institutions, private business and for personal purposes.

On September 5, democrat senator from New Hampshire Jeanne Shaheen called Kaspersky Lab software a “threat” to US national security. “The Kremlin interfered in our presidential elections, is waging a cyber war against our NATO allies, and is looking for an opportunity to use a similar tactic against democracy in the entire world,” Shaheen believes. “Why then would federal agencies, state governments, the US authorities and millions of Americans unwittingly invite this threat into their cyber networks and secure spaces?” she asked. The senator added that she was currently working on a bill which would be supported by the Democratic and Republican parties. The bill would prohibit the government from using Kaspersky Lab software, she clarified.

The company’s founder Eugene Kaspersky has repeatedly denied the accusations of collaborating with the Russian intelligence agencies, and suggested that the US government acquaint itself with his program’s original code.

  Kaspersky Lab, Russian software, Best Buy, Russia