Senior U.S. intelligence officials on Thursday told a Congressional committee that they were concerned that Moscow-based Kaspersky Lab, one of the world’s largest cybersecurity firms, could pose a threat to the U.S. homeland.
“We are tracking Kaspersky and their software,” Defense Intelligence Agency Director Vincent Stewart told the Senate panel. The head of the National Security Agency, Adm. Mike Rogers, said he is “personally aware and involved” in “national security issues” associated with Kaspersky Lab.
Kaspersky Lab products are widely used in homes and businesses throughout the United States and around the world.
Kaspersky Lab refuted claims of aiding foreign governments in their cyberespionage efforts in a statement on Tuesday.
“As a private company, Kaspersky Lab has no ties to any government, and the company has never helped, nor will help, any government in the world with its cyberespionage efforts,” the company stated.
“For 20 years, Kaspersky Lab has been focused on protecting people and organizations from cyberthreats, and its headquarters’ location doesn’t change that mission–just as a U.S.-based cybersecurity company doesn’t allow access or send any sensitive data from its products to the U.S. government, Kaspersky Lab products also do not allow any access or provide any private data to any country’s government.”
The company specifically addressed concerns regarding being a tool for the purposes of the Russian government, saying it had found more Russian-related cyberespionage campaigns than any U.S.-based company.
“During the last 10 years, Kaspersky Lab has discovered and publicly reported on multiple Russian-speaking cyber espionage campaigns, which is more than any other U.S.-based company. Due to the company’s unique and global customer mix, Kaspersky Lab will continue demonstrating its leadership by finding and reporting global cyberthreat campaigns, regardless of the origin or intention.”
The company said it is available to assist all concerned government organizations with any ongoing investigations.