In a shocking revelation, the head of the US House of Representatives' Intelligence Committee has warned US companies against doing business with China's Huawei Technologies Co Ltd. Elaborating further, the committee report has stated that the company’s equipment “could open doors for spying”.
China-based, Huawei Technologies is a leading maker of telecommunications gear, and a revelation as such would hit its ambitions hard.
However, Huawei not the only company flagged in the report. ZTE, another leading name in the manufacturing of telecommunications equipment, based in Shenzhen, China, too has been mentioned, citing security risks.
Opening doors to spying?
“If I were an American company today … and you are looking at Huawei, I would find another vendor if you care about your intellectual property; if you care about your consumers' privacy and you care about the national security of the United States of America,” said Chairman Mike Rogers.
The Michigan Republican, a former FBI special agent made the revelation on the CBS television programme '60 Minutes'. The report adds that the excerpts shown in the programme do not specifically give out any evidence to back Rogers' concerns.
“The excerpts released by 60 Minutes did not include specific references to ZTE. It was not immediately clear whether Rogers and the committee were blackballing ZTE as well,” states a Reuters further.
The findings that have been arrived upon at the end of a year-long investigation pertaining to alleged security risks coming from Huawei Technologies Co Ltd and China's ZTE Corp will be shared today.
“One of the main reasons we are having this investigation is to educate the citizens in business … in the telecommunications world,” Representative C.A. Ruppersberger of Maryland, the panel's top Democrat, was quoted as telling at the program by reports.
The committee, in its opinion, shared that by allowing Huawei to “build and maintain large swaths of America's telecommunications infrastructure opens a door for the Chinese government to spy on the U.S. government and engage in industrial espionage.”
In its response, Huawei Technologies has affirmed that it has been “globally trusted and respected,” doing business in almost 150 markets with more than 500 operator customers, including nationwide carriers across every continent except Antarctica.
“The security and integrity of our products are world proven,” William Plummer, a company spokesman in Washington, said in an email. “Those are the facts today. Those will be the facts next week, political agendas aside.”
Both companies have refuted the charge levied on them that their expansion in the United States has been proving to be a security risk. Reportedly, the companies have gone further and stated that “they operate independently of the Chinese authorities”.