On Thursday (20 June), the Biden administration announced its plan to ban the sale of antivirus software made by Russian cybersecurity company Kaspersky in the US.

US Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo expressed concerns that Kaspersky’s access to US computers and an individual’s personally identifiable information has the potential to be exploited and weaponised by the Russian Government.

Established in 1997, Russia-based Kaspersky protects the data intelligence of almost half a million people and a quarter of a million companies.

The downloading of software updates and the resale and licensing of Kaspersky products will be banned from 29 September 2024. Sales of white-labelled products will also be barred, Reuters reported, citing an unnamed source.

Three Kaspersky units are to be placed on a trade restriction list by the US Department of Commerce due to allegations of conspiracy with Russian military intelligence.

Kaspersky has previously denied links to the Russian Government and denies it is a threat to US national security.

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In an official statement, Kaspersky stated that its software is used to protect US national security from a “variety of threat actors”.

Kaspersky stated that the barring of its business is because of the “present geopolitical climate and theoretical concerns”, as opposed to a thorough assessment of its network of products.

Kaspersky said this new government policy will not hinder their “ability to sell and promote cyber threat intelligence offerings” in the US.

The Russian cybersecurity company said it will remain devoted to its mission to protect companies and individuals from cyberattacks.