Federal government to cut ties with Russian software company

The DHS says the federal government will ban use of anti-virus software from the Russian software company, AO Kaspersky Lab, due to potential ties to Russian intelligence.
4:43 | 09/13/17

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Transcript for Federal government to cut ties with Russian software company
I everyone on an Abbas live in New York with the big news just breaking today out of Washington DC the Department of Homeland Security has announced. It is moving to ban a specific brand of Russian software across the entire federal government. For more on this how when it alive not to my colleague Mike Levine he joins us down. From our Washington DC hero and might you thigh viewing your team first broke this story of the FBI investigation. In Q this company Tony exactly what happened today. Yeah as you say this is a big move for many years now several years the FBI has been investigating this company it's not based in Moscow Kaspersky Lab. It's one of the world's biggest cyber security firms. And the US government has been worried that at least some people within the company may have ties to Russian intelligence services. And they've been worried that. Because of that possible relationship that may be the Kremlin could try to use. Links that they have to the company to snoop on Americans or two attacked critical infrastructure cent since the company's anti virus software is used so politically in the United States. And today they devour the Department of Homeland Security announced that they were actually banning the software from the US government from. Any federal agency and any of their systems and they've directed all 430. Offices of the federal government. To make sure that they don't have to spur ski products on their systems and if they do they now only have three months to start removing the software from their systems. Incredible stuff and I know the Department of Homeland Security issued a statement laying out. The reason that they were making this decision now some of the details behind that I think we have an excerpt now we will show but Mike. This is no small matter here the risk that they're exciting here is. Actually q.s and national security this is clearly something they've been looking into for awhile are they concerned that there could have been a compromise to that security. Already. You know the US government has been very coy about why they're so concerned about Kaspersky Lab they have so far presented no evidence publicly that there even links. Between. The Russian government and Kaspersky Lab in fact the statement today that you referenced is the first time ever been a member of the executive branch has said. On the record that there are links or that the US government believes there are links. Between the crown went and Kaspersky Lab. But why there's so much mystery surrounding this still to this day this is something people have been reporting on for a while you when your team. Included what do we know about cuts Kaspersky labs in the company. Well we know that that at least three of its top executives have ties are past ties to the KGB or. Russian military intelligence services the company CEO Eugene Kaspersky. Went to us high school but technical high school that was sponsored by the KGB. And other executives at Kaspersky Lab have similar past ties or experiences with Russian intelligence. And you got a statement from the company as well in response to the federal government's move here today whether they have to same time. The ES OID for others the company itself today said. That they're disappointed in this decision by DHS that they think that the allegations being made against them are completely unfounded. But they say that they appreciate the fact that DHS today has said that it will give Kaspersky Lab some time. To try to sort of calendar of the DHS move to present any evidence that they might have. That to trying to change DHS's mind. So regulate out there this is certainly a big deal this is the first time they've done something like this specifically with the parts at this company. But why on a larger level why is something like this so significant right now. Well. Obviously there is that escalating tension between the United States government in Russia. And the US government particularly DHS in the intelligence community are particularly concerned that. Russia is willing to to go to lengthen it hasn't gone before to try to. Again spy on Americans are two target infrastructure in the United States. And in terms of Kaspersky they have 400 million users around the world millions of users inside the United States. Many of the users are government agencies state agencies federal agencies so this company has has reached across the United States and that's why US officials are so concerned. Michael being congratulations to you on first breaking a story about federal investigation. Into the company valuing your team and your reporting today thanks for being with us appreciate thank you. And thanks all of you for watching as well if you want to get more deet tails and background reporting on this. Head over to abcnews.com anytime there a ton of reports there on this topic in particular including the latest. From today for now I'm on an Abbas and the feedback here second.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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