After facing a US ban, Russia-based Kaspersky Lab on Thursday announced to move its core customer data storage and processing processes for most regions to Zurich, Switzerland, by 2019 — at a time when the European Union (EU) gets ready to introduce a new data privacy law.
The transfer of core processes, including software assembly and threat detection updates, will be supervised by an independent third party, also based in Switzerland, Kaspersky said in a statement.
“By the end of 2019, Kaspersky Lab will have established a data center in Zurich and in this facility will store and process all information for users in Europe, North America, Singapore, Australia, Japan and South Korea, with more countries to follow,” the cyber-security firm said.
This information is shared voluntarily by users with the Kaspersky Security Network (KSN) an advanced, cloud-based system that automatically processes cyberthreat-related data.
The announcement is part of the company’s “Global Transparency Initiative” announced in October 2017.
“Trust is essential in cybersecurity, and Kaspersky Lab understands that trust is not a given; it must be repeatedly earned through transparency and accountability,” the firm said.
Kaspersky Lab will relocate to Zurich its ‘software build conveyer’ — a set of programming tools used to assemble ready to use software out of source code.
Before the end of 2018, Kaspersky Lab products and threat detection rule databases (AV databases) will start to be assembled and signed with a digital signature in Switzerland, before being distributed to the endpoints of customers worldwide.
“The relocation will ensure that all newly assembled software can be verified by an independent organization, and show that software builds and updates received by customers match the source code provided for audit,” said the company.
Kaspersky Lab has sued the US Department of Homeland Security (DHS) over its decision to ban the Kaspersky products in federal agencies over data security.
The DHS was concerned about ties between Kaspersky Lab officials and the Russian intelligence services, directing federal departments and agencies to remove Kaspersky Lab products from their information systems.
Kaspersky Lab later denied that it has ties to the Kremlin and filed an appeal in a federal court under the Administrative Procedure Act to enforce its constitutional due process rights.
Twitter recently banned Kaspersky Lab from advertising on its platform, stating that the company “operates using a business model that inherently conflicts with acceptable Twitter Ads business practices.”
The EU is all set to introduce the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) on May 25 to harmonize data privacy laws.