Who is uninstalling Kaspersky in Italy

Who is uninstalling Kaspersky in Italy

The first to publicly announce the divorce from the Russian antivirus Kaspersky was the Ministry of the Interior. Two weeks after the recommendation with the National Cybersecurity Agency (Acn) urging public bodies to review relations with technology made in Russia due to the invasion of Ukraine, on March 31 Viminale announced that it had cut some licenses of the software, one of the best antivirus on the market and very popular in the tenders of the Italian state. Others have done or are doing it. One month after the alert, sportsgaming.win is able to report other public entities that have closed or are closing relations with Kaspersky. Such as the Higher Institute of Health (Iss), the National Research Council (Cnr), the Authority for Communications (Agcom), the University of Verona, the National Institute of Nuclear Physics (Infn) and the Institute for environmental protection (Ispra).

Other offices, such as the Ministries of Foreign Affairs and Labor, which according to the procurement database Contrattipubblici.org have active licenses with Kaspersky, did not answer sportsgaming.win's questions in time for publication. “We are aware of some customers who have or will arrange the replacement. A process that between risk assessment, testing, migration, can take months away, exposing companies and administrations to dangerous vulnerabilities. Some entities, on the other hand, are carrying out the necessary risk assessment assessments ”, Cesare D'Angelo, Kaspersky's general manager for Italy, explains to sportsgaming.win.

What is happening:

Kaspersky out of the public administration Who put the antivirus at the door Exit strategy Tenders in extremis Clouds on the horizon WiredLeaks, how to send us an anonymous report If you know of problems with the termination of Kaspersky contracts and want to communicate securely, use WiredLeaks - Click here

Kaspersky out of the public administration It is March 15th, the invasion of Ukraine by Russia has been going on for three weeks. Acn, the new national agency responsible for dictating the Italian line in the field of IT security led by director Roberto Baldoni, addresses in an internal circular inviting "to consider the security implications deriving from the use of information technologies provided by companies linked to the Russian Federation "." Among these, particular importance is given to information security due to the high level of invasiveness with respect to the systems on which they operate - specifies the Acn -. Given the need to have such technological solutions, it is not excluded that effects of the conflict could compromise its reliability and effectiveness, for example it could affect the ability of supplier companies linked to the Russian Federation to ensure adequate support for their products and services ".

Unlike what it does the German counterpart Bsi in the same hours, which in a public note “recommends replacing the applications of the sof Kaspersky’s virus protection tware with alternative products, ”or the Government Center for Cyber ​​Security (Anssi) in France, Acn never explicitly names Kaspersky, the Moscow-based company that produces the anti-virus of the same name. But when in the circular he refers to "device security, including antivirus and antimalware applications", they all make an association with the group founded in 1997 by Eugene Kaspersky and his ex-wife Natalya (also a programmer). The founder's reassurances were of no use. Nor the guarantees that the company continues to present. D'Angelo explains: “The security and integrity of our products and data services and engineering practices have been confirmed by independent third-party evaluations.”

Who is Eugene Kaspersky Really? His antivirus company is in the crosshairs of the cybersecurity authority for the reflections of the invasion of Ukraine and despite attempts to free itself from Moscow, some shadows stretch over its history Who put the antivirus at the door The Ministry of the Interior was the first state organ to bid farewell to Kaspersky. On March 31, Undersecretary Nicola Molteni, in Lega share, replied in writing to an urgent question the day before, signed by Renate Gebhard of the South Tyrolean People's Party and by Paolo Romano and Elisa Siragusa of Europa Verde. Molteni explains that the Interior and Territorial Affairs Department of the Interior Ministry "has communicated the completion of the uninstallation of Kaspersky products from all the departmental" server "and" client "systems and the replacement with software from different sources". The one who presides over the firefighters, public rescue and civil defense "is implementing the provisions", also adopting "the necessary technical measures aimed at preventing data theft or cyber sabotage actions". And while the public security and civil liberties departments do not use it, the one for the general administration has the Russian antivirus only on some devices, for which "the administrative and contractual activities for the replacement have already been started" .

The Interior Ministry, however relevant, is only the tip of the iceberg. According to the startup Contrattipubblici.org, which manages a database of public administration purchases, since 2013 2,462 entities including ministries, hospitals, schools, universities and investee companies have purchased Kaspersky licenses, for a total cost of 18 million euros (with a average of 3 thousand euros per contract). The largest number of contracts is in force in 2021: 724. Not all of these companies had or still have the antivirus installed, because in some cases the agreements have expired and have not been renewed. This is the case for the IT consortium Csi Piemonte, Consip, the state-owned company for public procurement, the Sport and Health group, Istat or Anas, the road management group that switched to McAfee between July and October 2021.

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Here if you don't see the graph In March, according to the same database, 129 contracts for Kaspersky licenses were still active . sportsgaming.win asked the interested parties for it, to find out how they are moving, which other antivirus they turned to and at what costs (any penalties for early termination included). While some entities replied on the change of contract, few mentioned the new software and the amount spent.

The Higher Institute of Health (Iss) told sportsgaming.win that it "activated the procedures for the diversification of products, in the time necessary to guarantee the highest IT security and the efficiency of services ". "As for the costs of the operation, they are still in the definition phase as we are proceeding step by step with the implementation of the new procedures which are in any case in the final phase", added the ISS press office. The University of Verona replied that "it is proceeding as indicated by the law, without additional charges". Agcom, on the other hand, "is preparing to complete the technical analysis activities aimed at identifying an alternative product to Kaspersky, whose contract with the company providing the service is expiring". The Authority that supervises the world of communications warns that "the replacement of the product will take place as soon as possible and will take into account the diversification of the products in use".

The contract with Kaspersky of Ispra would naturally expire at the end of the year, but after the Acn circular the "IT department is evaluating, through market analysis and technical evaluations, the possibility of acquiring, in a short time, a different antivirus protection system compatible with our infrastructure ". The same, according to sportsgaming.win, applies to the Financial Police, whose Kaspersky licenses expire at the end of the year. The yellow flames are already working to find an alternative. While the National Authority for the safety of railways and road and motorway infrastructures (Ansfisa) makes it known that the issue is "on the agenda" and "is currently deciding how to proceed". sportsgaming.win has learned that Enpam, the medical insurance institution, is also evaluating the situation. Officially, the Foundation said it cannot "comment on the measures taken to protect our members and their pensions".

In Italy, the Privacy Guarantor has opened an investigation on the Kaspersky antivirus The company with headquartered in Moscow, it has contracts with thousands of Italian public bodies. For this reason, according to the Guarantor, it is necessary to assess the risks relating to the processing of users' personal data and whether these have been shared with government authorities of third countries. Exit strategy The National Institute of Nuclear Physics (Infn) and the National Research Council ( Cnr) have provided the most complete reconstructions on the strategies adopted. The first reports to sportsgaming.win that it "started removing Kaspersky right away and to date it has been removed from almost all computers". In the missing few specimens that are rarely connected, according to the institution, rarely to the network. To buffer the situation on Macs, the Eset antivirus has been installed, while for Windows you travel with Defender, waiting to choose a "definitive solution, under evaluation". The Infn makes it known that "no penalties have been paid, but a case has been initiated with the Kaspersky reseller to try to obtain a refund for the unused period of the license".

Roberto Puccinelli, manager of the IT sector of the CNR, explains to sportsgaming.win that even before the outbreak of the war in Ukraine, the Council "began to evaluate other solutions, because Kaspersky's licenses were due to expire in April". According to the executive's calculations, having made one hundred licenses for antivirus, three quarters are with Kasperksy and a quarter with the American Sentinel One. “We jumped at the ball - says Puccinelli - and placed an order for other licenses with Sentinel One, without renewing Kaspersky. We have given the order to the peripheral offices to do the same. "As the program and the offer, based on the cloud, change, the CNR will pay about 10% of the product compared to the cost of the Russian one." Our choice was independent and linked to technical reasoning ", adds the engineer. The transition took place step by step, first evaluating the new solution on a sample of machines and then extending its use.

Immediately after the invasion of Ukraine, the States United States advised to uninstall Kaspersky According to the briefings of the American authorities to some companies, already close to the first days of the war, Washington suggested getting rid of the antivirus. at the time of publication of this article it has not received any answers on their strategy. ia Romagna, Lepida, the Marche health authority (Asur), Invalsi (the institute that evaluates training and education systems and which delivers tests for school exams), the Antitrust Authority, the metropolitan city of Reggio Calabria and the Municipality of Catanzaro, Anpal (the employment agency that deals with citizenship income earners).

From the Contrattipubblici.org database it is revealed that March 15, while the Acn was preparing the alert circular on Russian technologies, the Municipality of Pisa closed a market survey for the renewal of 750 three-year Kaspersky licenses. And also the Piedmont Region and Asur Marche took an interest in purchasing the software at the beginning of 2022. D'Angelo specifies that his company serves "in most cases local public administration bodies" and that "it has made itself available to public authority to answer questions, requests for information and to represent his point of view in a transparent and shared manner ". It also ensures that an external auditor “has confirmed the safety of Kaspersky's process for developing and releasing antivirus updates against the risk of unauthorized changes”. "In addition - he adds - we operate transparency centers around the world, which serve as facilities for trusted partners and government stakeholders to review company code, software updates and threat detection rules", spreading the essential technical documentation and also offering remote access.

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Here if you do not see the graph It is soon for the Italian executive to quantify the impact that this stop will have on the 2022 budget: "Certainly there will be a backlash, which does not concern us alone, but will include the entire supply chain", ie the suppliers who sell the software. The company, says D'Angelo, "is not currently planning any restructuring or reorganization of any kind". “The international situation has changed the scenario in all countries, including ours; but the company is solid and wants to continue investing and working in Italy - says D'Angelo -. We want to reiterate our willingness to work with institutions and continue to protect Italy from current threats, recalling that as a cybersecurity company we have discovered the largest number of Apt [advanced persistent threats, ed] of Russian origin and we are a key player for national and global security ". "The company, in all its global branches, operates publicly and according to business policies, and not geopolitics - explains the manager -. The ongoing military conflict is a historical fact that has inevitably impacted not only Kaspersky, but many other economic operators, but it is not a dies a quo, from which time is counted again ”.

Clouds on the horizon However, clearings are not expected for Kaspersky in Italy. Formiche reports that in a hearing with the Finance Committee in the Senate, the director of Acn Baldoni anticipated a circular in which the agency will explain to companies and public offices how to replace Russian technologies. A further push to put Kaspesky at the door. D'Angelo hopes that "the Italian government will continue with this approach of risk assessment and preventive analysis of data / facts. Because the risks of cybersecurity, due to poorly thought-out and emotional choices, not corroborated by technical assessments, could increase, and not decrease, with delicate and potentially very damaging consequences ". The Palazzo Chigi line, however, seems to go in the other direction, saying goodbye to Kaspersky.

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