Huawei to be reviewed in cybersecurity of critical UK infrastructure

The UK government will be looking into Huawei’s involvement in national infrastructure over the same cybersecurity fears which resulted in a ban of the manufacturer’s equipment in the United States after failing to prove the company has no association with the Chinese government.

TelecomsTech first reported on the US situation where – along with rival firm ZTE – “the two firms had failed to demonstrate the absence of Chinese state or military influence in their operations”.

It’s obvious to see the sensible worry about an overseas vendor controlling the majority of critical infrastructure; especially with the rise of cybersecurity fears, and hacking originating from China.

The report which recommends the UK to review the potential influence of other nations in national security infrastructure was first presented in parliament in June, but published earlier this month.

Huawei has a long-standing relationship with BT – who own most of the UK’s infrastructure – and provide a lot of the hardware. The damning report points at lack of national security considerations.

“The Committee was shocked that officials chose not to inform, let alone consult, Ministers on such an issue. We are not convinced that there has been any improvement since then in terms of an effective procedure for considering foreign investment in the CNI.”

It continues: “The difficulty of balancing economic competitiveness and national security seems to have resulted in stalemate. Given what is at stake, that is unacceptable.”

The Chinese-based firm is founded by Ren Zhengfei; a former People’s Liberation Army officer. However, the company insists it has no government or military links.

What do you think about Huawei’s involvement in critical UK infrastructure? Is a review overdue?

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