FCC to vote on new proposals to keep Huawei, ZTE networking gear out of U.S. 5G networks

FCC to vote on new proposals to keep Huawei, ZTE networking gear out of U.S. 5G networks
The FCC, repeating the well-worn line that Chinese networking equipment manufacturers Huawei and ZTE are threats to national security, has introduced a two-part proposal that would prevent large U.S. telecom outfits from using gear from either company. According to Tech Crunch, this ban would also force carriers to remove any networking equipment they use that has already been sourced by the two manufacturers. Huawei is the global leader in networking equipment with ZTE in fifth place.

With U.S. carriers building out their 5G networks, lawmakers in the country are concerned that Huawei and ZTE networking gear contain backdoors that will send corporation and consumer secrets to Beijing. That's because of a law in China that requires companies to gather intelligence on behalf of the Communist government in China if asked to; Huawei has continued to deny that there are backdoors in its phones or networking equipment. But that obviously hasn't stopped lawmakers from recommending to U.S. allies that they don't allow Huawei to participate in the construction of their 5G networks (more on that later).

Meanwhile, the FCC has proposed that giant U.S. telecom firms not be allowed to use funds from the regulatory agency's Universal Service Fund to purchase networking equipment from Huawei or ZTE. This fund is used to help subsidize the cost of providing service to low-income households. The second proposal would mandate that certain telecom companies remove any banned equipment that was previously installed. To help with the costs of changing to "more trusted" suppliers, the FCC proposal includes a reimbursement program for the wireless operators affected. Voting for both proposals will take place on November 19th.

FCC chairman Pai says that U.S. can't rely on hope to protect the nation, the economy and American values


While the FCC couldn't detail exactly how much money from the Universal Service Fund was used to buy networking equipment from Huawei or ZTE, an FCC spokesman said "on a background call" that some smaller rural carriers have indeed used money from the fund to purchase networking gear from Huawei. Yesterday, FCC chairman Ajit Pai, a Trump appointee, wrote an op-ed piece published by the Wall Street Journal in which he stated, "When it comes to 5G and America’s security, we can’t afford to take a risk and hope for the best. We need to make sure our networks won’t harm our national security, threaten our economic security or undermine our values." And for those who consider Huawei to be the victim of a U.S. conspiracy theory, Pai wrote, "That means China could compel Huawei to spy on American individuals and businesses. Imagine if a 5G network with Huawei equipment were operating near a U.S. military installation, critical infrastructure facility or other sensitive location. Beijing could demand the installation of a “back door” to allow secret access to the network, insert malware or viruses, and receive all kinds of information—without Americans ever knowing. Independent experts confirm the risk. A report issued this year by the cybersecurity firm Finite State found a majority of the Huawei firmware images it analyzed had at least one potential back door and that each Huawei device had an average of 102 known vulnerabilities."


Despite warnings from the U.S. government to its allies about using Huawei networking equipment in 5G networks, European countries like Britain and Germany have not heeded this advice. Newspapers reported on Sunday that Prime Minister Boris Johnson plans on allowing telecom countries in the U.K. to allow Huawei equipment to be used in "non-contentious" parts of 5G networks where the potential fallout from any spying would be limited. And a couple of weeks ago, we told you that the Germany government, afraid that banning Huawei would delay the completion of 5G networks in the country, has decided to allow its carriers to purchase equipment from the company.

Earlier this month, a report was published claiming that the Trump administration was trying to develop domestic competition for Huawei. U.S. officials allegedly approached domestic networking powerhouses like Cisco and Oracle about getting into the business of producing radio transmission gear for 5G wireless networks. Both companies reportedly declined, citing the time and money needed to enter such a competitive space.

FEATURED VIDEO

12 Comments

1. TechNeck

Posts: 657; Member since: Aug 29, 2014

I can't wait until this administration is rid of because all of these actions aren't even necessary without proper proof, and they have yet to provide any substantial proof.

4. Dr.Phil

Posts: 2475; Member since: Feb 14, 2011

Do you think Democrats are going to be any different?

6. Alcyone

Posts: 533; Member since: May 10, 2018

Their all in the same page. The titles are just there to pacify the masses. Gotta let the mass think they have some say in the working government. They don't care or need to care if there is "real" proof. Majority of people believe what their ballot select says. Imo, many people are just asleep and oblivious to their ability to think for themselves.

2. Ashoaib

Posts: 3309; Member since: Nov 15, 2013

Good for US and good for Alan. Happy prince

3. lyndon420

Posts: 6861; Member since: Jul 11, 2012

First and foremost, I'd like to see some proof that the USA and Canadian governments aren't spying on us before I give any consideration to this whole China spying BS.

7. TBomb

Posts: 1632; Member since: Dec 28, 2012

It's not just the possibility that China would spy on us (the citizens), but they also could spy on us (the nation/government/businesses). The US government/military isn't going to spy on the US government/military.

9. meanestgenius

Posts: 22388; Member since: May 28, 2014

No, the U.S. will just spy on every other country and it’s citizens, as well as their own citizens.

5. Feanor

Posts: 1410; Member since: Jun 20, 2012

Funny, Pai made his source public, but Huawei fanboys, who are so vocal nowadays, still request more proof. How exactly do they define proof then, if this proof is still not enough. And again; what proof has China provided for banning Google Services, WhatsApp and Facebook apart from a vague statement that these companies are a security threat to them? Talking about double standards here.

13. Slim3bdo2 unregistered

Funny u don't read the source , which says slot about you ( simple minded person that will believe anything said to him and believe everything he sees on his TV , tablet , iPhone . And can't evaluate anything using his mind ) I reed what I could from the source and I say as I could because the article is f**king propaganda without any proof , spiting numbers all over the place without any specific details that's the 1st 2 pages , then goes for about 6 about China propaganda and why it's important to stop them from achieving 5g before the US . You are eefing hilarious . Grow up , start thinking with your own mind d.

8. meanestgenius

Posts: 22388; Member since: May 28, 2014

Funny that Germany, the Czech Republic, the U.K. and other countries have found no security risks with Huawei’s networking equipment, but the U.S. government claims to have found some. And Huawei haters, who are so vocal with their disdain for Huawei and erroneously treat Huawei and China as if they are the same entity, still require more proof, when so many countries are moving forward with allowing Huawei’s networking tech to service their needs. Guess the U.S. will just be left far behind in regards to 5G technology. People need to understand that China’s actions cannot be equated to Huawei’s actions, something that the Huawei Haters just can’t seem to grasp. Total lack of comprehension.

10. Feanor

Posts: 1410; Member since: Jun 20, 2012

If you read carefully, you'll notice that the UK has also misgivings about the trustworthiness of Huawei, and they accept only limited employment of equipment parts that are deemed not dangerous. Also what you fail constantly to understand is that nobody equates Huawei's actions with China's actions, but US actions with China's actions; if the Chinese don't offer enough explanation about their treatment of American companies, then they cannot expect any explanation of the US treatment of Chinese companies.

11. meanestgenius

Posts: 22388; Member since: May 28, 2014

If you take your own advice in reading carefully, you’ll see that the U.K. has still gone on and decided to use Huawei’s networking equipment. What you continue to fail to realize is that several people have equated China’s actions to Huawei’s actions. What China is doing is of no concern to me, and at no time have I ever defended their wrongdoings. I’ve only defended Huawei with how they are being mistreated by the U.S., a country that is as guilty or more so than China when it comes to wrongdoings.

Latest Stories

This copy is for your personal, non-commercial use only. You can order presentation-ready copies for distribution to your colleagues, clients or customers at https://www.parsintl.com/phonearena or use the Reprints & Permissions tool that appears at the bottom of each web page. Visit https://www.parsintl.com/ for samples and additional information.