Russia Arrests Top Cybersecurity Executive Ilya Sachkov on Treason Charges

Russian authorities have arrested top cybersecurity executive Ilya Sachkov on Sept. 29 over charges of state treason.

A court in Moscow said that it had ordered authorities to arrest Sachkov, the founder of one of Russia’s top cybersecurity companies Group-IB, for two months, without providing further details.

“The Lefortovo District Court of Moscow ruled on September 28 to choose custody for a term until November 27 as a measure of restraint for Ilya K. Sachkov,” a court source said, as quoted by Russian news agency TASS.

A security source told TASS that Sachkov is under suspicion of handing over classified information on cybersecurity to foreign intelligence agencies, adding that the foreign agencies could have “employed” him.

State treason in Russia is punishable by up to 20 years in prison.

Kremlin Press Secretary Dmitry Peskov said that the Kremlin did not have details about the case, BBC News reported.

In a statement, Group-IB said that it was “confident in the innocence” of Sachkov.

The company added that it will refrain from making further comments on the charges due to the ongoing investigation.

Russia’s business ombudsman Boris Titov called for an explanation to the investigation, claiming it was necessary due to its scale and uniqueness.

“There is nothing worse than this crime because such cases are considered behind closed doors. Only special lawyers are allowed and non-disclosure subscriptions are taken from all participants,” Titov wrote on Facebook.

The arrest came a day after law enforcement officials conducted a search at Group-IB’s office in Moscow.

Group-IB said in a statement that the reason for the search was unclear and that its top management and lawyers were assessing the situation.

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