Dutch Government Removes Kaspersky After Fears of Digital Espionage

Issues for Kaspersky Continue to Snowball…

The Dutch government released a statement on May 14, 2018 stating they would be phasing out the use of Kaspersky Labs products on government devices, due to the “national security risks” the software presents.  According to CNET, Justice Minister Ferdinand Grapperhaus wrote a letter to Parliament stating the Russian government has an “active offensive cyber program that focuses on the Netherlands and the Netherlands’ interests”.  In addition, the Netherlands have concluded the ties between the security software company and the Russian government pose security risks.  Grapperhaus reported to The Dutch News,

‘This combination of factors has led the government to conclude that there is a risk of digital espionage and sabotage against the government and vital services,’ the minister said.

At this time, there is no evidence suggesting Kaspersky products have been abused in the Netherlands; although, Grapperhaus believes this preventative approach is necessary.  Not only has the government began moving away from the Russian-based security software, but they’ve also began urging Dutch companies with sensitive data to do the same.

This news comes just weeks after the U.S. began considering sanctioning Kaspersky products, and just before the Russian security company announced they would be moving parts of its core business functions out of Russia to Switzerland.

Is Kaspersky Crumbling?  Here’s the Timeline

  • May, 2017 – Marco Rubio asks Senate Intelligence Committee if they would be willing to use Kaspersky on their devices — overwhelming consensus was “No”.
  • July, 2017 – Legislation worked towards banning Kaspersky products on military devices
  • July, 2017 – Russians Communication Minister made threats against American software and hardware companies, if legislation banning Kaspersky were to pass
  • August, 2017 – U.S. Government urges the private sector to remove Kaspersky Labs products
  • August, 2017 – U.S. Government confirms ties between Kaspersky Labs and Russian Intelligence
  • September, 2017 – U.S. major electronics retailers, including Best Buy and Office Depot, drop Kaspersky products from their shelves
  • September, 2017 – West Virginia University drops Kaspersky as their security provider
  • September, 2017 – U.S. government ordered federal agencies to remove Kaspersky products on all devices
  • October, 2017 – Allegations were reported the Kremlin used Kaspersky security products to obtain confidential NSA data
  • October, 2017 – Reports claim Israel warned the U.S. of Kaspersky after hacking its network
  • December, 2017 – Kaspersky files a lawsuit against the U.S. regarding the congressional ban of Kaspersky products.
  • March, 2018 – Department of Justice moves to dismiss the Kaspersky lawsuit
  • April, 2018 – Twitter bans Kaspersky ads from its social media platform
  • April, 2018 – U.S. considers sanctioning Kaspersky products
  • May, 2018 – Dutch Government ceases use of Kaspersky Labs products to avoid digital espionage
  • May, 2018 – Kaspersky announced it would be moving key business features out of Russia, relocating to Switzerland
  • May, 2018 – Judge dismisses Kaspersky’s filings to overturn U.S. ban

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8 thoughts on “Dutch Government Removes Kaspersky After Fears of Digital Espionage

  1. Who would think having the security of your computer depend on a foreign power a good idea in the first place? Most foreign government powers are not constitutionally limited as ours is supposed to be.

      • @Harry Burton: What about it Harry? According to the constitution, there is a right to privacy, so sue the government. Of course the government is broke in any case and it is you and I the taxpayers who will get the bill. It would seem that the people who are elected to public office do not always support the constitution even if they swear an oath to do so. You do realize that in most cases the NSA merely exploits an existing software weakness and does not author the original code.

  2. I find this issue very interesting as I abandoned Kaspersky anti-virus in favour of BitDefender some 8 or more years ago for the very reasons now being stated. I am a private individual who keeps an eye on the news. At the time the Russian President (a certain Mr Putin) was taking control of all the TV channels & imprisoning oligarchs who disagreed with him. As a former spy, it would be fair therefore to assume that knowing other peope’s business and thence to control is likely to be a significant personal motivator in his approach to many things.
    Subsequent actions have done nothing to dispel this view.

    • @I on the Future: Wrong. The oligarchs oppose Putin because he had kicked their influence out of the Kremlin; they were being pursued and imprisoned for tax evasion and involvement in organised crime. The only reason they became oligarchs in the first place was because they were in key positions to seize control of Russia’s resources following the collapse of the Soviet Union. Furthermore, George Bush Sr was also a spy, so by your flawed logic, US software would also suspect. You must be incredibly vain if you think you have anything on your computer that would be of interest to Vladimir Putin.

    • Your assumptions are nothing else than assumptions grown in our propaganda controlled by the USA deep state. Do you suffer for selective amnesia or what. Do you still have any association between NSA, GCHQ, BND and so on, and spying on everyone and everywhere for decades?
      Oh yes I see, for you it might be very acceptable because it is the USA but not for me and billions like me.

      Accustions against Kaspersky are malicious and politicised to the maximum. It is the USA desire to discredit Russia because Russia does not want to bend forward on the USA order as all our NATO governments did. The USA is doing all they can to destroy Russian reputation and image by creating fake accusations which our MSM grabs as a hot boon without ever verifying and researching the truth.

      It would not hurt you if you would acknowledged the truth unless if you are paid to troll on behalf of our MSM and corrupt terrorist supporting governments.

      • @Martin: As the term “deep state” is being used by Trump supporters to their own end, I would assume that you are defending the Russian side. Accusations against Kaperskey have been well founded and investigated. Russia has used Kapersky for their own campaigns against dissedents and foreign powers and will move on to something else when Kapersky becomes useless for them.

        • @Harry Burton: Next time before you are commenting on such sensitive subject try to engage your grey mass before writing nonsenses. Kaspersky software was for years good and appreciated by all our western governments. That was simply because it was as still is impartial and top professional as well as reliable. If you would have any true knowledge about governments procurement procedures you would know that in the USA the almighty NSA gave the seal of approval to use Kaspersky on the first place, and it was not a Trump which I hate by the way. Same went for all other governments who besides unequivocal acceptance of NSA approval were seeking our own expert agencies to perform a search.

          I believe you are frantically searching how to justify your illogic accusations and of course, the old good accusation of “foreigners will never be as good as our because we are supreme to everything” is always the hard one to beat in heads of nationalists who see no further than own nose. Do you realise that for the rest of the world it is your country that is foreign with the worst possible record in abusing all international agreements, international law, simply because it is America First? If you will continue to judge on the above-mentioned merits than the path to Nazism has been already pawed in your mind.

          Your justifications are nothing else than politicised garbage our governments are pulling out because if you want to blacken one nation than everything has to be used to that extent. Do you realise how dangerous is the path our governments chose to follow? By following the USA warmongers who are desperate for so many reasons to start a world conflict with catastrophic consequences, there is no positive outcome. In the USA people believe in their superiority and live in denial of the facts on the ground. In last 40 years in tens of wars perpetrated by the USA over independent and peace-loving countries of which not a single one ever attacked the USA, threatened to attack or in any shape or form violated international law, has been attacked, thoroughly destroyed and at the end they always win against American aggression.

          So knowing all of these facts on the ground you should really think twice before you start to educate other. The fact the matter is that the USA is using every available means to weaken Russia and not vice-versa. It is the USA which is forcing our NATO governments to blindly follow and execute the USA orders. Trust me the Kaspersky is safer than any USA similar product.

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