Russia is able to bite: it prohibits the use of Western antivirus
Russian legislators in response to the US law < / and> about banning the use of Kaspersky Lab's antivirus software in the Department of Defense (at least in the Pentagon), they started work on their own project. Under the proposed new law, from 2019, Russian officials will require that any computer manufactured or imported into the Eurasian Economic Union be secured only using "local technological means". This means that any protection solution that will be delivered from a country other than Russia, Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan will be installed illegally.
Nikolay Anatolyevich Nikiforov, head of the Ministry of Communications and Mass Media of Russia, reported that the bill was passed on to Vladimir Putin on Wednesday, i.e. July 5. The new law will come into force in mid-2019.
Denis Mateev, head of the Slovak ESET in an interview with the Russian news agency Meduza , said that foreign producers of antivirus software have no more than 5% of the Russian antivirus market in their hands. This means that the decision of the Russian Duma is purely political and will not have a major impact on the revenues of foreign companies providing antivirus software to Russia. Although no Russian official will ever admit it, the proposed law is a direct response to the draft budget of the United States, which prohibits the use of Kaspersky Lab anti-viruses in strategic institutions.
Kaspersky Lab vs USA
Let's recall that from May this year US officials deal with issues related to the spying activity of Kaspersky Lab's programs in the United States, citing the possible "influence of the Russian government" that threatens the interests of the US. The official investigation has never been initiated, or at least it has never been publicly announced.
Jewgienij Kapersky in an interview with The Associated Press he said he was willing to work with the US government and could testify against US lawmakers to prove that allegations against his company are not true.
If the United States needs, we can disclose the source code.
Anything I can do to prove that we don't behave maliciously I will do it.
The head of the Russian antivirus company admitted that he could transfer some of the research and development work on software in the US to curb all rumors about his company and products which - as he put it - "were initiated two decades ago by jealousy." It was probably about jealousy focused on specialized security software for a Russian company that has been in the forefront for many years and will not resign from this place.
For other complaints about employing former spies in the sales department, Kaspersky Lab responded affirmatively. These accusations against the possible interference of external factors with antivirus software dement in this way, that would require access to various technological processes at the same time by a group of people who would have to have different levels of access to specific resources.
Although Evgeny Kapersky, wanting to stop all skeptics, goes hand in hand to the American government and proposes to check the code of programs developed by Kaspersky Lab, the ongoing dispute over who is right has not stopped for two years. The only certain information is that Kaspersky Lab in a few years can completely disappear from the American market, which by 2022 can be achieved even 22 billion dollars. So there is something to argue about.
Russia closes the world or cares for its own interests
In recent months, Russia has dictated its own conditions to representatives of foreign technology companies. If Western giants are not willing to disclose the source code of the software / firmware to Russian officials, they may be banned from operating in the territory of the Russian Federation. The law, which was presented to the Russian president, is dictated not only by political but also economic reasons - the Kremlin wants to gain more autonomy in the digital era. By 2024, Russian officials want to limit the impact on economic and political life of Western technologies in Russia to 10%.
Strengthening supervision over the Internet, IT equipment and software is the result - for one act of betrayal, for another act of heroism - one man, Edward Snowden. Russia, just like the US and other countries in the world, realizes that using non-native software, exposes its own strategic institutions to the ability to snoop through built-in backdoors.
Sanctions are a double-edged weapon
The weapons that the US and Russia are fighting, but also other countries, are two-edged weapons. Danger of pursuing such a policy is seen by Eugene Kaspersky, who is difficult to refuse to use common sense in this matter. The following section of the statement was translated from the original article which is on the blog of the head of Kaspersky Lab.
There are more negative side-effects of forbidding the use of technologies from specific regions based on government decisions. Given the current geopolitical situation, here are five dangerous effects of such actions:
1. Government organizations will not be able to apply the best security solutions available on the market. Considering that having several layers of protection - from different manufacturers - offers improved security, eliminating one of the leading manufacturers from the security chain can significantly lower security levels, especially when we talk about producers who detect all cyber threats regardless of their origin, language and purpose.
2. Slow down the development of cybersecurity technology. Due to the fact that government contracts will not be signed with the best in the industry, and with local producers in a given country, we will observe less investment in innovations regarding security. For example, smaller companies from "inadequate" countries will not be able to sign a sufficient number of contracts to generate the profit required to improve technology.
3. Limiting the use of security products will narrow the base of researchers, which in turn will reduce the response time to new global cyber threats. If this sanctioning game becomes global, it will affect most security industry manufacturers, and thus all users without any exceptions will be more vulnerable to cyber attacks. In short, Christmas would come earlier - and more often - but only for cybercriminals.
4. By limiting the operation of companies based on where they come from, it will have a negative impact on international cooperation. For over a decade at IT security conferences everyone has been saying (and I'm probably the loudest) that we need more trust, openness, cooperation and partnership to fight global cybercrime. To keep up with the evolving landscape of threats, law enforcement agencies from different countries have to cooperate with the cyber security community. Only in this way can you stop criminals operating all over the world.
5. Last but not least, this trend would lead to a significant reduction of competition within the cybersecurity industry, and as we all know, competition is good for the market - and especially for customers who expect the best and most effective products. Not all producers have the same opportunities and expert knowledge. What's more, attackers will have an easier task because they will know that they have to break only specific (local) technologies to break into the infrastructure, companies and governments in a given country. Cyber attacks will simply be easier to implement. Of course, if the security market in a country is so developed that there is internal competition, the situation will not be so uninteresting.
These five examples of a negative impact on the security industry are no jokes and we should consider the potential consequences that may be taken - perhaps - in good faith, but with bad indications. Making far-reaching decisions based on speculation and false guesses is not sensible.
Learn more about our offer
We use Google Cloud Translation and Gengo API’s to translate articles with exception of our comparative tests.