Allegations that Kaspersky’s well-known end point security software has been used to provide Russian intelligence agencies with access to sensitive data, potentially creating a backdoor into millions of computers, have been made by The New York Times. With US government agencies already directed to remove the software from computers, the writing is on the wall for the Russian software giant.
The investigation alleges Israeli officials discovered the infitatration when they hacked into Kasperksy’s systems.
Kaspersky is denying that they were complicit with Russian intelligence agencies. As I see it there are three scenarios and none of them are good for Kaspersky.
- They knew about it and were working with the Russian intelligence
- The didn’t know they had been hacked and their software had been compromised
- They weren’t hacked and an investigation will exhonerate them
The first two scenarios will be almost instantly devastating. For a security company to have been infiltrated, either knowningly or not, will smash their reputation to smithereens.
And, even if they are eventually exhonerated, by the time that happens the reputational damage will be so severe that the company will, in all likelihood, either shrink or die completely.
Until this is resolved, it’s pretty hard to justify leaving Kaspersky software on any computer.