Kaspersky Lab to move all Australian users' data from Russia to Switzerland

Kaspersky Lab to move all Australian users' data from Russia to Switzerland

To be housed in brand new data centre in Zurich

Kaspersky Lab CEO Eugene Kaspersky

Kaspersky Lab CEO Eugene Kaspersky

Kaspersky Lab will move and store all Australian users' data from Russia to Switzerland, in a new data centre in Zurich.

The move is part of the cyber security vendor's Global Transparency Initiative announced in October 2017.

In March, Asia Pacific managing director for Kaspersky Lab Stephan Neumeier said that the vendor is the only global cyber security company investing in providing transparency to customers, through the creation of centres designed to provide full visibility into how products work and operate.

As a result, Kaspersky Lab will move customer data storage and processing for most regions, as well as software assembly, including threat detection updates.

The vendor said the move will be supervised by an independent third-party based in Switzerland.

“In a rapidly changing industry such as ours we have to adapt to the evolving needs of our clients, stakeholders and partners," Kaspersky Lab CEO Eugene Kaspersky said.

"Transparency is one such need, and that is why we’ve decided to redesign our infrastructure and move our data processing facilities to Switzerland.

"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."

Kaspersky Lab expects to have established a data centre in Zurich by the end of 2019, which will house and process all the data from users in Australia, Europe, North America, Singapore, Japan and South Korea.

The cyber security vendor also said that there will be more countries to follow.

The vendor said that the move also reflects its commitment to working with others to address the growing challenges of industry fragmentation and a breakdown of trust.

"Trust is essential in cyber security, and Kaspersky Lab understands that trust is not a given; it must be repeatedly earned through transparency and accountability," Kaspersky added.

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

Kaspersky Lab products and threat detection rule databases (AV databases) will start to be assembled and signed with a digital signature in Switzerland before the end of 2018.

"The relocation will ensure that all newly assembled software can be verified by an independent organisation, and show that software builds and updates received by customers match the source code provided for audit," the company stated.

While Kaspersky Lab is arranging for the data storage and processing, software assembly, and source code to be independently supervised by a third-party, the vendor is also calling out to the industry for the creation of a new, non-profit organisation to take on this responsibility, "not just for the company, but for other partners and members who wish to join".

Kaspersky Lab products were banned from use by certain Government entities in the US, UK and Lithuania recently.

In December 2017, Kaspersky Lab asked a US federal court to overturn a Trump administration ban on use of its products in government networks, saying the move deprived the company of due process.

The company has since been lifting a trust flag having announced in March a non-commercial partnership with Crime Stoppers in Australia, with the aim of educating the local community against online crime.

The deal, born out of a meeting in Singapore and influenced by both Kaspersky Lab and Crime Stoppers' existing relationships with Interpol, sees the cyber security vendor share data and training tools that will enable Australians contacting crime stoppers call centre to learn about cyber crimes. 

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