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Russian watchdog suspects PepsiCo involved in commercial espionage

Staff Writer |
Russia’s Federal Service for Veterinary and Phytosanitary Oversight suspects PepsiCo of a hacker attack to receive a secret document and qualifies it as commercial espionage, the service’s press secretary Yulia Melano told reporters.

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The watchdog said on Monday that Sergei Glushkov, vice president for corporate relations of PepsiCo for Eastern Europe, presented a copy of the veterinary service’s internal document that was marked confidential and had not been sent to the company, at a meeting of a milk producers’ union Soyuzmoloko with the watchdog.

Glushkov told PRIME that PepsiCo only used legal methods of cooperation with the state.

Melano said, “Preliminary results of an internal probe of the Federal Service for Veterinary and Phytosanitary Oversight showed that none of the service’s employees with access to the document provided by Sergei Glushkov, having a restrictive note “for official use”, sent the letter into the external information space.”

Possession of the letter by Glushkov can be confirmed by watchdog’s Director Sergei Dankvert and other officials, Melano said.

“This is why the service made a conclusion about a possible cyberattack by the U.S. company PepsiCo with the aim of getting secret information of the Russian government,” she said.

“Since the internal document, which was illegally obtained by the company’s representatives, contained information about the Federal Service for Veterinary and Phytosanitary Oversight’s laboratory checks of milk processing companies, enterprises that make part of PepsiCo corporation, having the secret information ensured competitive advantage over Russian companies and made it ready for control. This fact can be assessed as commercial espionage.”

The watchdog will turn to the law enforcement agencies, she added.

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