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Barclays to continue to offer Kaspersky anti-virus software to customers

14 November 2017

Barclays will continue to offer Kaspersky anti-virus software to customers over the coming months, even as concerns are raised about its Russian supplier's alleged links to intelligence gathering by the Kremlin.

The UK bank has sought to downplay fears of compromising hundreds of thousands of customers' security by offering Kaspersky software free with online banking services since 2008. The software is said to have been used by some 250,000 customers over the period.

Concerns have been building over Kaspersky since the US government banned its use by US government agencies in September.

UK surveillance network GCHQ suspects Kaspersky may have been used by Russian spying agency the FSB to gather intelligence on sensitive foreign targets, and military and government officials are said to be the exposed, the Financial Times reported.

Meanwhile there is no evidence to suggest any of Barclays customers' data has been compromised.

Barclays said in a statement it had not been alerted to any concerns, ''We have never received any advice or guidance from GCHQ or the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) in relation to Kaspersky.''

Barclays plans to end its contract with Kaspersky next year for commercial reasons, but in the meantime it is expected to continue offering the software to customers who want it in the absence of any GCHQ advice to the contrary.

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