5G network in the U.S. to be under governmental control?

5G network in the U.S. to be under governmental control?
Some of the advantages 5G has over 4G, including less energy consumption and wider signal coverage

There's no doubt that 5G is the future of mobile networks. And why shouldn't it - it will be faster and more reliable while also enabling futuristic technologies such as self-driving cars, and remotely performed surgeries. Sounds great, but we are still a couple of years away from the full implementation of 5G, and countries and network companies alike are still figuring out the best way to adopt it. In the case of the U.S. things have become a bit more complicated. Recently Trump's national security team has came up with the idea to implement a single 5G network, ran by the government. But why suddenly gain control over something that's been private for ages? Well, just in case China tries to compromise the U.S. security.

The idea was initially announced on Sunday by a senior administration official. “We want to build a network so the Chinese can’t listen to your calls,” the senior official told Reuters. “We have to have a secure network that doesn’t allow bad actors to get in. We also have to ensure the Chinese don’t take over the market and put every non-5G network out of business”. This concept is quite far from implementation, being six to eight months from even considered by president Trump. 

Although 5G network nationalization is still a concept, there's already a rough action plan. According to a document from a presentation by a Security Council Official acquired by Axios, there is only one viable way to approach the situation and it involves the U.S. government building a single 5G network. It would then proceed to rent it to wireless network providers. This would provide the security needed, as everything would be controlled by the government itself, but would also be an exclusive case where private structure is being nationalized. 

This 5G rush is caused by the fact that “China has achieved a dominant position in the manufacture and operation of network infrastructure,” and "China is the dominant malicious actor in the Information Domain”, according to the document. Recently, AT&T was forced to abandon its plan to offer subscribers Huawei's Mate 10 Pro after members of the congress stood against it with the help of federal regulators. This was done due to "national security concerns", as reported by congressional aides. There was also the Huawei and ZTE investigation in 2012, which was conducted after espionage allegations towards the two companies.

As far as the state of implementation of 5G in the U.S. goes, companies are working on it at full speed. An AT&T spokesman said that “Thanks to multi-billion dollar investments made by American companies, the work to launch 5G service in the United States is already well down the road.” He also mentioned AT&T aims to be the first to launch 5G in 12 areas in the U.S. later this year. Everything new is expensive as well, with $275 billion estimated investment in 5G by wireless providers. Worldwide, 5G's development is being worked on by companies such as Nokia, Huawei, ZTE, Samsung and others. The last-gen network is expected to reach over 1 billion people by 2023, with half of that being in China, as predicted by market analysts. 

source: Axios via Reuters

FEATURED VIDEO

36 Comments

1. NarutoKage14

Posts: 1264; Member since: Aug 31, 2016

Security? That would just allow the government to total access to every single bit that your devices send and receive. That would make it laughably easy for the government to censor the internet.

3. Anonymous.

Posts: 423; Member since: Jun 15, 2016

Couldn't have said it better, bruh. All this is a ploy to censor the Internet in the name of "security". Can see through this bulls**t.

28. bucknassty

Posts: 1252; Member since: Mar 24, 2017

Alright... time to move to 6G

2. Anonymous.

Posts: 423; Member since: Jun 15, 2016

As if the US does not do espionage in other countries, with the Edward Snowden exposing them very well. In fact, China should begin restricting Apple as well. Tit for tat.

10. NarutoKage14

Posts: 1264; Member since: Aug 31, 2016

They already do and if I'm not mistaken they forced Apple to hand over their source code if they wanted to sell iPhones in China. Next month a Chinese government owned company will be in charge of all Chinese based iCloud accounts.

13. Anonymous.

Posts: 423; Member since: Jun 15, 2016

Yeah, but I was more like banning iPhone sales in China in case Chinese brands get no breath in the US due to the government's shenanigan.

16. NarutoKage14

Posts: 1264; Member since: Aug 31, 2016

They already do that as well when foreign companies are putting out of business local ones.

19. Anonymous.

Posts: 423; Member since: Jun 15, 2016

But the iPhone isn't exactly banned in China, now... Is it?

21. Anonymous.

Posts: 423; Member since: Jun 15, 2016

Yeah it's banned for government usage, just as Chinese equipments are banned for government usage in the US... But I'm more about a consumer usage ban. More accurate that way, as the consumers are the first victims of spying, no?

24. PenTiltoKet

Posts: 552; Member since: May 18, 2016

Agree with you

4. JMartin22

Posts: 2311; Member since: Apr 30, 2013

I know my comment will be the outlier of this sentiment, but if you have nothing unlawful to hide, then it shouldn’t matter either way. Government entities aren’t phishing for your nonsensical and embarrassing secrets. They’re looking for suspicious or unlawful activities. Sadly, this is the day and age we live in. Political and religious extremism is real and dangerous. This is just my views, if you feel otherwise on the matter, that’s fine. We’ve lived for decades unsuspectingly monitored, with our privacy thrown out there on the Internet for decades. I don’t know what’s so different now quite frankly. It’s just now that more attention is placed centerfold, that people care. Nothing was different then from now

8. kanagadeepan

Posts: 1189; Member since: Jan 24, 2012

They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither and eventually lose both - Benjamin Franklin

9. JMartin22

Posts: 2311; Member since: Apr 30, 2013

As long as you continue to use the Internet, blog and post your day to day life on popular social media sites and allow cookie trafficking of all the websites you visit, you’ll never have air tight and true privacy, nor should you expect to. I’m not pro-government or pro-fascist, but to me, this seems like common sense. All societies with governmental systems are going to monitor activities.Thats just how our human societal ways work, with our infighting and self-destructive nature.

32. southernzombie

Posts: 349; Member since: Jan 17, 2017

The same people who are complaining about wanting their privacy are the same ones who post every aspect of their of lives on social media.

35. tedkord

Posts: 17038; Member since: Jun 17, 2009

This is about way more than personal privacy (though that's reason enough not to have state controlled internet). It's about free flow of information. I know I don't want Trump (or any politician) deciding what need I can see. They can block access to "subversive" sites (which to the modern republican is CNN). They can monitor your political posts, and if they think you're the opposition, arrest you on trumped (pun intended) up charges. You don't think Don the Con wouldn't love the power to shut down any news he deems fake? No, state controlled internet is a bad, bad idea.

12. Subie

Posts: 2252; Member since: Aug 01, 2015

If a hacker finds a way a way go gain access to your phone - well that just sucks, but not a national security issue. Now if a terrorist organization finds a way to affect a network that links to self driving vehicles - we have a more serious situation. Nobody likes Big Brother watching them, but there are some real security concerns here considering the future of networking and the internet of things connectivity. Asia has pretty much taken over all manufacturing work already. If countries like China also eventually do all the innovating designing and building of of North America's future network infrastructure how can we stand if or when things go sour and they pull the plug... My point is there could be far more future issues at stake here then just our privacy concerns. Those matter too btw.

17. mootu

Posts: 1317; Member since: Mar 16, 2017

I get where your coming from but how does the US gov owning the network make it any more secure? They can't make it a ring of steel or air gap it so there's always a way in. US network technology is already behind the Chinese and the US is going to end up running on a 2nd rate 5g network. TBH it really seems like this administration is trying to create a cold war with China, it needs to give US citizens an enemy to fear.

23. Subie

Posts: 2252; Member since: Aug 01, 2015

I'm not sure if the US gov owning the network would make it more secure, but I think having something this vital being designed and controlled by America is a good idea. I'd rather have an in-house IT guy running and setting up my network then become dependent on remote outsourcing. And that bring me to my next point. I think you're right about America being behind the Chinese on network tech. But America is slowly becoming behind them on almost everything. And that's the bigger problem. Remember that America innovated and engineered the ground work for modern networking decades ago with Arpanet. And if things continue as they are now America could eventually go from being self sufficient to completely dependent. Where even having that in-house IT guy might not make much of a difference anymore...

14. mootu

Posts: 1317; Member since: Mar 16, 2017

If there's one thing that the US government hates it's competition. I love how they give the old excuse of "it's for your protection", what a load of bull#hit!. All they want is total control of all US citizens and this would be a massive step in gaining just that. At least the Chinese are totally open in spying on it's populace.

15. nerdmb

Posts: 57; Member since: Nov 11, 2017

Chinese communist government can do anything. You should never think of them in your perspective.

18. Anonymous.

Posts: 423; Member since: Jun 15, 2016

^^ The same applies to the US government, brah... Two sides of the same coin.

20. MarmiteTheDog

Posts: 185; Member since: Jul 31, 2017

I'm not sure how successful it will be if it was ran by that bunch of morons.

22. newbey123

Posts: 696; Member since: Mar 19, 2012

lmao, what could go wrong.

30. jove39

Posts: 2137; Member since: Oct 18, 2011

Typical republican rant...we need to secure the wireless communication to stop China from sniffing. While in reality, they are envy of control Chinese govt has over their citizens.

31. Jeradiah3

Posts: 1149; Member since: Feb 11, 2010

Government controlling the internet? Another reason to think that this bigot and his ass kissers are up to this!!

33. PhoneCritic

Posts: 1337; Member since: Oct 05, 2011

Has anyone ever thought its not the Russians or Chinese we need to worry about but the very network itself? All countries may need to worry 5G connectivity linking the IoT giving rise to AI and either enslaving us or wiping us out.. I can see all those self driving cars coming to a stop banking systems shutting down all flights stopping and medical equipment shutting down until the AIs demand are met. A little far fetch but it could happen.

34. datagrab

Posts: 49; Member since: Feb 13, 2015

And here in india, our 4G is still slower than most country's 3G. Been to viet, thai, phil, indo and certain parts when you travel or go inside certain buildings, 4G switches to 3G but it's still faster than our so called 4G here in 3rd world india.

* Some comments have been hidden, because they don't meet the discussions rules.

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.