Huawei personnel held dual positions with Chinese military, new study claims

Huawei personnel held dual positions with Chinese military, new study claims
The worst seems to have passed for Chinese phone maker and telecom giant Huawei as President Donald Trump has said that the ban the US Government was planning to impose on the company will not happen after all. Huawei may now breathe a sigh of relief, but for industry watchers what is left is confusion: how is the Chinese company that was just a few weeks ago declared a threat to US national security, suddenly safe to use?

A recent investigation reveals that not only are concerns about Huawei's deep ties to the Chinese Government justified, but the company is actively hiring former government employees that were tasked with hacking or industrial espionage conducted against Western firms. The study was conducted by Christopher Balding, associate professor at Fulbright University Vietnam, and London-based conservative think tank Henry Jackson Society. The investigation inspected resumes of Huawei employees that were leaked online from unsecured databases and from recruitment firms' websites.

The conclusion reads the following:


One of the inspected CVs describes a Huawei employee who also held a role at a military university through which they were employed by the Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA). The employee was linked to the Chinese military’s space, cyber, and electronic warfare capabilities.

Another concerning CV describes a Huawei employee who was a representative of a government structure responsible for espionage and counter intelligence. The study says the person "engaged in behavior that describes planting information capture technology or software on Huawei products."

The Study Findings



So far the concern with Huawei was exactly that the company has close ties with the Chinese Government and military. The suspicion was that the company could be installing backdoors in its devices and services that could be exploited by the Chinese state. So far, however, we have not seen direct evidence of such a backdoor in Huawei products, even from the US Government when the ban was first suggested.

Huawei responded to the investigation by saying that it could not verify the CVs in question and thus cannot "confirm the veracity of all of the information published online."

Huawei's response

Huawei was unable to verify the CVs in question and says the study contains speculative statements


Huawei also said that it conducts background checks and also provides training for employees who will have access to its customer networks and data.

On a separate note, it's worth knowing that it is not uncommon for ex-military personnel to leave state entities to join private companies in China, looking for better pay.

What is the truth?

"In Huawei personnel words on their CVs, they held dual positions for Chinese intelligence gathering and electronic warfare units"

The simple answer is that we don't know.

What we do know is that just a couple of weeks the US Government declared Huawei a threat to national security, and then suddenly backpedaled on its words after China settled to buy more US soybeans. So it does seem like Huawei's access to the US-made Android platform and hardware components was used as a bargaining chip in that trade war.

Apart from that, we have not seen any evidence of a Huawei backdoor, but we have seen a lot of concern.

"We are not arguing that hiring ex-military personnel (means) your organization is an espionage front. I simply do not say anything of the sort but that is what they are trying to conflate. I am saying, in Huawei personnel words on their CVs, they held dual positions for Chinese intelligence gathering and electronic warfare units while working for Huawei either taking orders from or coordinating with the Chinese state. That is what is profoundly worrisome," Christopher Balding responded to Huawei's commentary about the study.

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16 Comments

1. QuantumRazer

Posts: 149; Member since: Apr 27, 2019

There's as much chance that this study is another false accusation as Huawei is actually lying about it and hiding something. Honestly though, I'm getting tired of all those daily 'reports' and just want US & Chinese govt. to make amends and get it over with. I just don't want to see Huawei go when Samsung is also facing the sanction from Japan and might struggle to continue their core businesses in future.

2. alanrock

Posts: 324; Member since: Oct 04, 2018

this "study" is pathetic ... next ?

9. AbhiD

Posts: 850; Member since: Apr 06, 2012

And if this study had come against Google or Apple or Facebook, China apologists like you would have already declared war on US

11. alanrock

Posts: 324; Member since: Oct 04, 2018

give me professor Balding study in paper format please , i need to go to the loo.

15. jacky899

Posts: 431; Member since: May 16, 2017

First we need to see who funded Balding's research and what the funder wishes to see in Balding's findings. Let's not forget the many expert finding and evidence of Iraq secretly recruiting specialists for developing weapons of mass destruction to fuel the US propaganda to justify unlawful actions against Iraq. None of the accusations were real. Even the Kuwaitis admitted the "eye witnessed" atrocities against Kuwaitis by Iraq military was fabricated lies and exaggerations.

3. AlienKiss

Posts: 203; Member since: May 21, 2019

If Google had (maybe they have, I don't know) ex NSA, CIA etc employees, people would be screaming like crazy that they are being watched and surveillanced. If huawei does it, it's all cool. And everyone keeps asking for proofs, like they're the most important person in the world and it's just impossible that someone would actually dare to lie to them. Do you really think such a huge gvt would ever recognize it?? You are delusional then. All I know for sure is that every day there are cyber attacks on hospitals etc coming from china. There are no underground hackers in china. it's impossible with all those restrictions and super surveillanced internet. You people are so naive and overprotective just because you bought one of those phones?? Frankly, I don't give a fly. It's your digital profile they have (your fingerprints, your iris, your voice, your 3D face, your credentials, your bank accounts, your email address, your porn photos and videos). It seems they love to blackmail people with their sex life.. Meanwhile I'll be buying Samsung or Sony like any other sane person does. I'm so glad their super aggressive marketing didn't get to me!

6. QuantumRazer

Posts: 149; Member since: Apr 27, 2019

'If Google had (maybe they have, I don't know) ex NSA, CIA etc employees, people would be screaming like crazy that they are being watched and surveillanced. If huawei does it, it's all cool' On the internet I have seen as much people hating on Huawei for(having a possibility of) spying as those who despise Google/Facebook for collecting user data or NSA for actually spying on people, so I don't see how you even managed to reach that conclusion.

8. AbhiD

Posts: 850; Member since: Apr 06, 2012

What's more is that most of Huawei apologists on PA are also accounts who either own Huawei devices or accounts which have been made in last 2-3 years. And everyone knows how China employs people to defend and promote it's interests across all kinds of sites in the world via fake accounts.

12. QuantumRazer

Posts: 149; Member since: Apr 27, 2019

Another 'those who are against me must be employed/paid by (insert the name of organisation)' argument, I've seen this gazillion times on the internet already. Next.

16. mahalo15

Posts: 84; Member since: Nov 30, 2018

They are 50 cent party members who are paid per post by the CCP. https://www.voanews.com/east-asia-pacific/who-are-chinese-trolls-50-cent-army

4. ShadowSnypa786

Posts: 593; Member since: Jan 06, 2017

Huawei responded to the investigation by saying that it could not verify the CVs in question and thus cannot "confirm the veracity of all of the information published online." Says it all really. I dont think Huawei is innocent as they seem Huawei is definelty doing something suspicious, maybe not as bad as what the US is saying but where there is smoke there is fire.

14. oldskool50 unregistered

Unless the smoke is actually from the fire you started. Ever think of that? You know how the US started Operation Desert Storm? Because they made a bunch of fake videos showing military hardware being moved, when it wasn't. It was old footage. The US staged 9/11 to start an illegal war. if you think 9/11 wasn't done by the US Gov't then, I have several bridges to sell you. The US created Pearl Harbor. It wasn't a surprise attack. They simply didn't prevent it because the US is a puppet and someone is pulling its strings.

5. Cyberchum

Posts: 1095; Member since: Oct 24, 2012

Ain't gonna go about attacking Huawei, but, with my knowledge—albeit limited—of China's operations and policies, I ain't gonna buy into the sainthood they (Huawei) usually portray. Like I said on a related article; the world would not adopt an OS birthed and regulated in (not necessarily by) China. it's all about choosing the lesser evil. The lesser evil might be represented by any corporation, to you. To me, however, I know which one it is.

7. Galen20K

Posts: 577; Member since: Dec 26, 2008

cue the Huawei Apologists, they're defensive because they know they're guilty

10. MsPooks

Posts: 172; Member since: Jul 08, 2019

Huawei good! Orange man bad!

13. oldskool50 unregistered

What most peopel don't understand is very simple. Chine being a Communist country means, when the Chinese Gov't ask you to do something, you don't have a choice. Now you can choose not to obey, and in most cases you ill suffer heavy consequences. Which usually or could result in your death. Huawei doesn't work for the gov't of China, they do work for the Gov't of china. It's no different than US companies doing work with Microsoft How do you know the US Gov't doesn't use Windows to help spy on the rest of the world?. I am betting, Microsoft's largest US client is likely the US Gov't. The only difference here is, if the Gov't asks Microosft to do something, they can say no or take it to court and let a court decide and even then it is up to Microsoft to comply. The only punishment Microsoft would face is financial and monetary related. the Gov't could freeze bank accounts and stop exports to get them to comply. But in China a military soldier could be sent to your office and he shots a bullet in your head in front of all your co-workers. Any company that has ties to their homeland Gov't, can be used for questionable purposes. And the US spies on the whole woprld. Stop being a bunch of asian hating hypocrites when the US has been busted many times for illegal spying. The frikkin NSA can activate the camera an mic on almost any cellphone runnign on a GSM network. Doesn't that mean that AT&T and other carriers are using their network and equipment to spy for the US gov't? YES!!!!!!!!!!!!!! The difference here though is, thanks to Edward Snowden, we have proof that the US does in fact engage in such, while there is ZERO proof that Huawei has ever done so. Having the potential of committing a crime and actually doing so are 2 different things. Every person in the world has a potential to commit a crime. The vast majority don't.

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