Reuters and Kaspersky claims, who’s in the right
Reuters, a highly rated news distribution, has released several claims (supported by anonymous material) detailing that Eugene Kaspersky tasked employees to attack their competitors, AVG Technologies. In a recent article Reuters wrote:
In 2009, Eugene Kaspersky, co-founder of one of the world’s top security companies, told some of his lieutenants that they should attack rival antivirus software maker AVG Technologies N.V. (AVG.N) by “rubbing them out in the outhouse,” one of several previously undisclosed emails shows.
“To be honest, I’ll feel pretty bad when AVG goes public and earns a billion. They won’t say thanks to you or me – don’t even hope,” Kaspersky wrote in another email seen by Reuters, dated Oct. 8, 2009.
“More and more I get the desire to smack them with their falses,” Kaspersky wrote in Russian in one email seen by Reuters, dated July 23, 2009.
In a response to these claims Kaspersky released a statement detailing that they believed all such statements to be slander and false claims. They stated:
“Reuters is looking for commentary on emails that may not be legitimate and were obtained from anonymous sources that have a hidden agenda. Taking supposed statements out of context and greatly speculating on their meaning, does not provide evidence for these ongoing false allegations by disgruntled, ex-employees. Kaspersky Lab has never conducted any secret campaign to trick competitors into generating false positives to damage their market standing. Such actions are unethical, dishonest and illegal. Accusations spread by disgruntled ex-employees are meritless and simply false.”
To look at these claims lets take a few steps backwards shall we. We love journalism its what keeps us in the know and on the ball, but on its most minimal level what is journalism. Wikipedia describes the word as:
Journalism is gathering, processing, and dissemination of news, and information related to news, to an audience. The word applies to the method of inquiring for news, the literary style which is used to disseminate it, and the activity (professional or not) of journalism.
While anonymous sources have held their part in the history of journalism it appears that until these sources can be cleared up and the legitimacy of these claims proven Kaspersky are indeed innocent until proven guilty and should be treated as just so.