Published: Tue, April 24, 2018
Sci-tech | By Brandy Patterson

Twitter Will No Longer Accept Ads From Russia's Kaspersky Lab

Twitter Will No Longer Accept Ads From Russia's Kaspersky Lab

Ads from Moscow-based Kaspersky Lab have been banned from Twitter, it was revealed on Friday.

In an email to Gizmodo, Twitter cited a Homeland Security notice that warned that the USA government was concerned about ties between "certain Kaspersky officials and Russian intelligence and other government agencies".

The Kaspersky Lab is further claiming that Twitter is the only social media platform which has banned its advertisements.

Eugene Kaspersky didn't look at Twitter's tactics kindly.

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"I see that of late you've been having concerns about the "health" of your social media platform, and how it can be used maliciously for spreading disinformation, creating social discord, and so on", Kaspersky said in the opening line of his post, which is addressed to Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey.

He praised Twitter for their idea regarding the Advertising Transparency Center, stating he understands that social media outlets are busy dealing with public and political pressure, referring to their recent testimonies on Capitol Hill amid an investigation into alleged Russian efforts to influence the 2016 USA presidential election.

Kaspersky argued that the majority of the company's promoted tweets are informative, educational posts about cyber security awareness, tips and research, and that even the purely marketing tweets it promotes are still in line with the behaviour of the rest of the IT industry, as is its business model.

Kaspersky is obviously not happy with the decision taken by Twitter, and is calling on the microblogging platform to provide more details about why the decision was taken.

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Kaspersky Lab co-founder Eugene Kaspersky disclosed the ban earlier this week adding that the company was first told about this ban back in January. "In my view, the ban itself contradicts Twitter's declared-as-adopted principle of freedom of expression".

However, Kaspersky is willing to let things slide if Twitter fesses up to the situation being a mistake: "Twitter, if this is a matter of a decision being made in error, please openly admit this; people'd forgive you - everyone makes mistakes! I think that would be the only civilized way to quash any doubts about potential political censorship on Twitter", Eugene said.

Commenting on the topic to Reuters, Twitter stated again that the decision is based on a conflict of business practices.

Twitter's spokesperson directed us to a public notice by the US Department of Homeland Security that it's concerned about ties between Kaspersky officials and the Russian government.

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Despite the ongoing furore though, figures from market research firm B2B worldwide showed that the majority of businesses have not been put off using Kaspersky Lab's products, and the company a year ago maintained an average Net Promoter Score (which measures how likely customers are to recommend your company) of 49, in line with the upper echelons of the software market.

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