Kaspersky Lab shifts customer data out of Russian Federation

Kaspersky Lab 20th Anniversary Party

The Dutch government will no longer be using Kaspersky Lab's software. Jacopo Raule Getty Images

The opening of a new data center in Zurich is the latest stage in this plan, and will apparently see a number of "core processes" moved from Russian Federation.

Commenting on the decision by the Dutch government to phase out programs by Kaspersky Lab to Sputnik, one of the world's leading software producers has revealed its plans to overcome the ban.

"The data of our customers from the US, Europe, Japan, Korea, Singapore and Australia will henceforth be stored and processed in Switzerland".

Kaspersky told DW that the new facility, which will open next year in Zurich, is a "big and complex project" that would allow it to "address customer concerns" by "moving some of our data storage and processing to a neutral region".

It is possible the move could be derailed by the Russian security services, who might resist moving the data centre outside of their jurisdiction, according to people familiar with Kaspersky Lab and its relations with the Russian government.

The migration will be supervised by an independent Switzerland-based third party "to ensure full transparency and integrity".

"In a rapidly changing industry such as ours, we have to adapt to the evolving needs of our clients, stakeholders and partners", he said in a statement.

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"We believe such action will become a global trend for cybersecurity, and that a policy of trust will catch on across the industry as a key basic requirement". The latest hit in the series the company has received from the Dutch government which announced that it will be phasing out Kaspersky products from its network. He said, "as a precautionary measure, [the use of] Kaspersky antivirus software [in] the national government will be phased out".

Kaspersky Lab will also relocate to Zurich its "software build conveyer" - a set of programming tools used to assemble ready-to-use software out of source code.

As part of the move, the company's products and anti-virus threat detection rule databases will be assembled and signed with a digital signature in Switzerland, before being distributed to the endpoints of customers worldwide.

The Russian cybersecurity giant Kaspersky, desperate to regain trust after US pushback against its alleged ties to Russian intelligence, is moving some of its key operations from Moscow to Zurich, Switzerland.

Reuters first reported the plans in March, citing company documents which said Kaspersky Lab was setting up the centre in response to moves in the United States, Britain and Lithuania a year ago to stop using the company's products.

Kaspersky Lab is arranging for the data storage and processing, software assembly, and source code to be independently supervised by a third party qualified to conduct technical software reviews. This approach will further show that generation after generation of Kaspersky Lab products were built and used for one goal only: protecting the company's customers from cyberthreats.

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