Canada has no choice but to ban Huawei from 5G mobile networks, security experts say


Ottawa — As the Liberal government prepares to roll out policies on next-generation mobile networks, global security experts show that all signs exclude Chinese vendor Huawei Technologies from the long-awaited blueprint. Say you are.

With the development of 5G (5th generation) networks, people will be able to connect faster online, have more links to the Internet, and will be enormous as innovations such as virtual reality, immersive games, and self-driving cars emerge. It provides data capacity to meet greedy demands.

Opposition conservatives have long pressured the Liberal Party to deny Huawei’s role in building the country’s 5G infrastructure, saying Beijing will be able to spy on Canadians more easily.

Some argue that Huawei’s participation may give Canadian customers access to a set of digital information gathered from how, when and where they use Internet-connected devices. .. Then the theory goes on. Chinese security agencies may force companies to hand over personal information.

These concerns stem from the fact that China’s Director of National Intelligence Act states that Chinese organizations and citizens must support, support, and cooperate with the work of the Director of National Intelligence.

Huawei claims to be a very independent company that does not spy on anyone, including Beijing.

“We sell in 180 countries around the world,” said Alykhan Velshi, Vice President of Enterprises at Huawei Canada. “We must comply with the laws of these countries, and if we violate our trust, we will find that we only sell in one country. “

Whether or not Huawei poses a real security risk, concerns are that countries can’t afford to bet on telecommunications companies that are enthusiastically supported by Beijing, said Wesley Walk, an adjunct professor and senior at the University of Ottawa. He said he created a general concept. Fellow of the Center for International Governance Innovation.

“The company is perceptually closely linked to the Chinese administration, so Western nations can’t do anything else,” said Work. “And they have a choice.”

Huawei Canada said it wants and expects the federal government’s decisions on 5G policies to be “based on technology, not politics.”

He also emphasizes that most of Huawei’s approximately 1,600 employees in Canada are involved in the research and development and marketing of non-network equipment products for carriers.

“In reality, Canada has a variety of businesses,” says Bersi. “That’s why we sell smartphones, earphones, and laptops in Canada.”

While Huawei’s issues have been heavily focused, the government’s 5G review is a much broader and more strategic view of how early technology can spur the Canadian economy. ..

“But to take advantage of this opportunity for 5G economic growth, we need to ensure the safety and security of technology,” was created earlier this year for then-Minister of Public Security Bill Blair. The briefing note states.

“Incidents resulting from the exploitation of vulnerabilities by malicious attackers are more difficult to protect and can have a broader impact than previous generation wireless technologies.”

Decisions made in foreign cabinet meetings and corporate meeting rooms months or years ago, whether by chance or by federal design, can significantly shape Canada’s 5G deployment.

Three Canadian partners in the Five Eyes Intelligence Sharing Alliance (US, UK and Australia) have taken decisive steps to curb the use of Huawei gear on their respective 5G networks. ..

The federal government strongly encourages the United States to carefully consider 5G security considerations, noting that the United States visited Canada in March 2020 to discuss issues with various ministers and government officials. I admit that I am doing it.

Fen Hampson, a professor of international affairs at Carleton University, said the United States “must participate” if Canada wants to remain part of the club.

“It’s a security premium to pay to be a partner in a privileged security alliance like Five Eyes, not just nationally. There’s no free lunch, you can’t have it both ways.” Hampson said.

“This is a big calculation we are facing right now, and I think it’s pretty clear in which direction the government will jump.”

Canada’s 5G policy announcements have been effectively shelved by the tense geopolitical drama between Ottawa and Beijing over the past three years.

In December 2018, Canada arrested Huawei’s senior executive Meng Wanzhou at the request of the United States. She was arrested on suspicion of violating sanctions on Iran.

The move apparently offended Beijing, and two Canadians working in China, Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor, soon said they endangered national security, which is widely seen as retaliation against Ottawa. I was arrested.

The United States recently signed a deferral of prosecution agreement in Meng’s case, allowing her to be released, and Beijing allowed the two known Michaels to return to Canada.

Meanwhile, Canada’s leading telecommunications companies have managed uncertainty by helping build 5G networks in collaboration with Ericsson of Sweden, Nokia of Finland and Samsung of South Korea.

Bell Canada, for example, said almost nothing about the upcoming federal announcement. “I have no comment other than being happy with 5G network providers Ericsson and Nokia,” said spokeswoman Caroline Odette.

Huawei points out that the company’s involvement in Canada’s existing mobile network has never led to security-related complaints about equipment from customers and governments.

“And it continues to be an important part of Canada’s telecommunications network today,” Velshi said.

Still, if Canada bans the company’s involvement in 5G, questions will arise about the fate of legacy Huawei devices in previously installed networks.

The government states that a Canadian security review program has been in place since 2013 to address cybersecurity risks.

Communications Security Establishment, a Canadian cyber espionage agency, works with telecommunications companies and equipment vendors to exclude certain equipment from sensitive areas of the Canadian network and perform mandatory equipment testing before use in less vulnerable systems. I guarantee.

The government says the know-how developed through the program will be important in assessing the risks of cyber threats and emerging technologies.

NS Jim Bron Skill

Canadian press

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