The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) added Russia’s AO Kaspersky Lab, China Telecom (Americas) Corp and China Mobile International USA to its list of communications equipment and service providers deemed threats to U.S. national security.
The regulator last year designated five Chinese companies including Huawei Technologies Co and ZTE Corp as the first firms on the list, which was mandated under a 2019 law. Kaspersky is the first Russian company listed.
Officials from US. have long said that running Kaspersky software could open American networks to malign activity from Moscow and banned Kaspersky’s flagship antivirus product from federal networks in 2017. Moscow-based Kaspersky has consistently denied being a tool of the Russian government,
FCC announcement did not cite Russia’s invasion of Ukraine or recent warnings by President Joe Biden of potential cyberattacks by Russia in response to U.S. sanctions and support of Ukraine.
In October last year, the FCC revoked the U.S. authorization for China Telecom (Americas), saying it is subject to exploitation, influence and control by the Chinese government.
The FCC cited its prior decisions to deny or revoke the Chinese telecom companies’ ability to operate in United States in its decision to add them to the threat list.