Germany to fire cybersecurity chief over alleged links to Russia

Arne Schönbohm has been on the bench since the various media revelations.

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The news is sensitive at a time when Germany is facing possible acts of sabotage from Moscow. Berlin is ready to fire the head of its cybersecurity agency for alleged contacts with Russian intelligence. Arne Schönbohm has been in the hot seat since media revelations reported his proximity to a cybersecurity consulting association suspected of having contacts with Russian intelligence services.

Asked about a possible substitution of arne Schönbohm, the Minister of the Interior made contact on Monday, October 10. “At this stage, I can only tell you that these are complaints that we take seriously.”said Nancy Faeser during a press conference. “We will review them first and then we will implement the necessary measures.”

Arne Schönbohm is implicated for his alleged contacts with an association called Cyber-Sicherheitsrat Deutschland. The latter, which he co-founded in 2012, advises companies, government agencies and legislators on cybersecurity issues. These links were the subject of investigations presented on Friday night in a broadcast by the ZDF public television channel. (in German).

One of the member companies of the association is more targeted: it is Protelion, a subsidiary of the Russian cybersecurity company OAO Infotecs, which, according to information from the “Policy Network Analytics” research network, has been founded by a former collaborator of the KGB.

Cyber-Sicherheitsrat Germany on Monday called allegations that he was under Russian influence“absurd”. Its president, Hans-Wilhelm Dünn, announced in a press release that he had excluded “with immediate effect” protection of its members.

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