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We're not spies; says Huawei to U.S.

Posted: 21 Sep 2012     Print Version  Bookmark and Share

Keywords:telecom equipment  security threats  spying  Chinese government 

The United Kingdom may have welcomed telecom equipment maker Huawei to invest and expand its operations in Britain; but in the U.S., the Chinese firms have been encountering spying allegations.

In a recent U.S. congressional hearing, Huawei and ZTE were in the hot seat on potential security threats that the company poses. Huawei SVP Charles Ding was interviewed by the House Intelligence Committee on grounds that Huawei's communications infrastructure may be utilised for espionage as mandated by the Chinese government.

Ding insisted that the company will never risk its business relationships worldwide and break clients' trust even under duress.

The panel concluded with the committee chairman still doubtful whether Huawei will hold true to its word that it will not be used as a "back door" for Chinese intelligence officials to source sensitive information.

Huawei had no choice but to drop a number of North American investments as Washington continues to block its attempts to expand in the region. Earlier this year, a deal fell through in Australia as well when its bid for contracts on the national broadband network was blocked.

In contrast, the U.K government approved a $2 billion investment plan from Huawei, as the company plans to expand its operations there over the next five years. European nations, though just as wary about security issues, have been more welcoming. Britain has resorted to probing for loopholes in Huawei's source code to certify that all equipments are operating securely.

Prime Minister David Cameron was quoted saying, "The British government values the important relationship with China, both countries have much to offer each other and the business environment we are creating in the UK allows us to maximise this potential."

Huawei has existing contracts with major telecom operators in Europe since 2005 leading to a 27 per cent sales growth in 2011.





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