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McAfee attempting to capitalise on Kaspersky ban

American security vendor McAfee appears to be trying to capitalise on the ban imposed by the US on Kaspersky Lab, touting this on its website in a bid to promote its own software.

The chief of Kaspersky Lab, Eugene Kaspersky, tweeted a screenshot of an ad for the McAfee Total Protection product where the legend at the top read: "FBI advises removal of Kaspersky for suspected ties top Russian spies".

This legend was followed by the words, "Safeguard with McAfee total protection."

Eugene added the sarcastic heading: "McAfee joins the #cybersecurity hall of shame."

And as can be seen from the screenshot below, under the name of the product - McAfee Total Production - the words "Headquarters in USA" are present, as if to rub in the fact that it has nothing to do with Russia.

mcafee capitalise

If that was not enough, an American flag forms the background.

But some of the company's moves have been spotted by infosec professionals and it appears that McAfee has more to do with Russia than it is willing to admit.

Well-known British security researcher Kevin Beaumont tweeted that McAfee had deleted the address of its Russian office from its website.

Quoting a Reuters report, Beaumont pointed out that McAfee was one of many American companies that has allowed Russian authorities to review its source code.

The report in question says: "In addition to IBM, Cisco and Germany’s SAP, Hewlett Packard Enterprise Co and McAfee have also allowed Russia to conduct source code reviews of their products, according to people familiar with the companies’ interactions with Moscow and Russian regulatory records."

The ban on Kaspersky is the culmination of a steady stream of actions that began in the wake of claims that Russia had interfered in the 2016 US presidential poll.

On 13 September, the US Department of Homeland Security told all US government agencies to stop using Kaspersky products, with a deadline of 90 days to implement plans to discontinue the use and to remove software from information systems.


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Sam Varghese

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A professional journalist with decades of experience, Sam for nine years used DOS and then Windows, which led him to start experimenting with GNU/Linux in 1998. Since then he has written widely about the use of both free and open source software, and the people behind the code. His personal blog is titled Irregular Expression.