Russia’s Kaspersky Lab has offered US government to inspect the company’s source code to keep away the distrust over its anti-virus and other cyber products.
The chief executive of Russia's Kaspersky Lab was quoted as saying by various media that he's ready to have his company's source code examined by US officials to help dispel long standing doubts about his company' link to the Kremlin. Eugene Kaspersky said Saturday that he's also ready to move part of his research work to the US.
The Rumors have long circulated about Kaspersky's ties to Putin, leading to speculation that the company's software could be used to spy on Americans.
"If the United States needs, we can disclose the source code. We are also ready to testify before US lawmakers as well. "Anything I can do to prove that we don't behave maliciously I will do it."," he was quoted as saying by Associated Press.
Kaspersky, the mathematical engineer who attended a KGB-sponsored school, also has worked for Russia's Ministry of Defense. He has long been suspected by few of his competitors, especially after his antivirus products turned popular in the US market.
Some even speculated that Kaspersky, an engaging speaker and a fixture of the conference circuit, kept his Soviet-era intelligence connections. Others say it's unlikely that his company could operate independently in Russia, where the economy is dominated by state-owned companies and the power of spy agencies has expanded dramatically under President Vladimir Putin.
Senior US intelligence officials have suggested Congress to stop Kaspersky's products. The lawmakers are considering a proposal to ban the company from the Pentagon.
Law enforcement seems to be taking a hard look at the company as well. On Wednesday, according to NBC news report, at least a dozen US Kaspersky employees were visited at their homes by FBI agents.
Kaspersky's offer to have his code audited may not quiet all the skeptics, some of whom are concerned less about the integrity of the company's software and more about the company's staff and the data they gather. Like many cybersecurity outfits in the US and elsewhere, some Kaspersky employees come from espionage backgrounds.
Kaspersky CEO also admitted that Russian intelligence worker was one of his staff. He added that the intelligence employees are there in the sales department due to their relationship with the government. However, he clarified further that his company’s internal network is too segregated for a single rogue employee to abuse it.
"It's almost not possible, because to do that, you have to have not just one person in the company, but a group of people that have access to different parts of our technological processes. It's too complicated." Eugene Kaspersky said. He also insisted his company would never knowingly cooperate with any country's offensive cyber operations.