Huawei – the security scandal

24.05.2019

If there’s one brand name causing a stir in the telecoms industry at the moment, it’ll be Huawei.

Huawei had big plans to be a leader in 5G infrastructure, but they’ve received a serious backlash from many countries it proposed to scale out in. Most recently, Donald Trump has signed an executive order banning US companies from using foreign equipment that has potential risk associated with it.

Trump raised the issue as a national emergency after speculation that the equipment could be used to spy on the US and other western governments. But he goes further, warning allies of the US not to use Huawei’s technology or they stand a chance of being frozen out of US intelligence.

What’s the UK’s stance on it?

The government has provisionally approved plans using Huawei technology for parts of the UK’s 5G infrastructure. However, cabinet ministers have raised concerns about Huawei and its intentions. With this recent announcement from the US and Theresa’s commitment to resign from her position, it’s likely our position will be re-evaluated.

What about everyone else?

Australia and New Zealand took a strong stance against Huawei technology being used in their networks due to security concerns. President Macron spoke for France, saying a technological trade war “is not appropriate” and that it would not block Huawei technology. Germany and Belgium have taken a similar stance, deciding not to block the Chinese telecom company.

The Netherlands is investigating possible espionage involving Huawei and the Chinese state. The allegations indicate that Huawei left ‘backdoors’ in its equipment to allow the Chinese government access to spy.

Japan also decided to ban Huawei technologies from public procurement in light of recent speculation.

There’s speculation that many countries are banning Huawei for political reasons, rather than security threats. Huawei have used this as the basis for the argument to the World Trade Organisation, where the company has complained it’s been unfairly treated.

Possibly the biggest debate however, is how do you actually pronounce Huawei? Good news, you can find out here.

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