It’s official: Kaspersky can’t do business with the federal government.
A nearly year-long saga to stop the federal government from banning a Russian antivirus software from its networks ended Friday in the U.S. Court of Appeals in D.C.
The ban—enacted last December as part of the 2017 National Defense Authorization Act—was spurred by intelligence community reports that Kaspersky antivirus software was being used by Russian intelligence agencies to collect information. Reports later surfaced of a National Security Agency contractor, Nghia Hoang Pho, who stored classified documents on his home computer that were detected by his Kaspersky software and later picked up by Russian agents.
The congressional ban came after a Homeland Security Department binding directive ordered all federal agencies to get Kaspersky software off their systems by October of this year.
The company’s founder and CEO, Eugene Kaspersky, left open the possibility of future challenges to the ban in a blog post Friday.
“Regardless of whether we decide to pursue further legal action in response to today’s decision from the D.C. Circuit Court, we’ll remain committed to providing the best cybersecurity solutions for our customers globally and saving the world from cyberthreats,” he wrote, calling the court’s decision “disappointing.”