SEATTLE – Russian president Vladimir Putin is reportedly directing government offices to get rid of Microsoft and other U.S.-based computer products.
NBC News reports the Kremlin wants government offices and state-controlled companies to rid itself of all foreign software.
An intelligence official tells NBC News Putin is targeting Redmond-based Microsoft because “it is the biggest American name in information technology and because it's easy to convince Russians that the company works with the U.S. intelligence community.”
Microsoft said it does not work with the government on spying, NBC News reports. A company spokesman says Microsoft has even sued the U.S. four times in order to protect the privacy of its customers.
Russia is reportedly preparing for a U.S. cyber-retaliation after months of alleged state-approved hacking. The U.S. has accused Russia of trying to influence the election.
Russia is also reportedly trying to block LinkedIn, which Microsoft is attempting to buy.