German cyber security chief to be sacked over alleged ties to Russia


German Interior Minister Nancy Faeser wants to replace Arne Schoenbohm, the head of the Federal Office for Information Security (BSI), local media reported on Monday citing sources close to the minister.

“It is being examined how a quick change of president can be achieved. The planned joint press conference by Faeser and Schoenbohm on Thursday will be canceled,” Bild newspaper quoted ministry sources as saying.

Earlier, German ZDF public broadcasting network reported about links of the BSI president to an obscure association called “Cyber-Sicherheitsrat Deutschland e. V.” The association is said to have contacts with Russian secret services. Schoenbohm was the founding president of the association until 2016.

Berlin-based security circles are taking this case very seriously. Security authorities would now “turn over every stone” with regard to the activities of the club, Bild daily reported.

They will also look into which companies purchased software from Russian provider Protelion (formerly Infotecs). Protelion used its membership in the association “Cyber Security Council Germany” for the distribution of the possibly insecure software.__The Nation