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About Labs


Policy on Detecting Government Spy Programs

F-Secure Corporation's policy on detecting spying programs developed by various governments

In late 2001, F-Secure Corporation received various queries on our standpoint regarding the possibility of spying programs developed by various governments.

Much of this discussion was generated by media coverage on rumored backdoor trojan known as "Magic Lantern", developed by FBI or NSA in USA. Discussion was increased as several US-based anti-virus vendors made comments implying they would on purpose leave a backdoor in their anti-virus products to allow such a spying program to work.

Thus, F-Secure Corporation would like to make known that we will not leave such backdoors to our F-Secure Anti-Virus products, regardless of the source of such tools. We have to draw a line with every sample we get regarding whether to detect it or not. This decision-making is influenced only by technical factors, and nothing else, but within the applicable laws and regulations, in our case meaning EU laws.

We will also be adding detection of any program we see that might be used for terrorist activity or to benefit organized crime.

We would like to state this for the record, as we have received queries regarding whether we would have the guts to detect something obviously made by a known violent mafia or terrorist organization. Yes we would.

F-Secure Corporation always aims to do what's best for our customers.



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