Proposed US-Chinese telecom deal worries US legislators

Huawei HQ

Three US Congress members have raised security concerns about a proposed deal between American and Chinese telecommunications companies, claiming that it could facilitate Chinese espionage in the United States. The proposed collaboration is between US-based Sprint-Nextel and Cricket Wireless, and Chinese hardware manufacturers ZTE Corporation and Huawei Technologies. But three US Senators, Jon Kyl (R-AR), Susan Collins (R-ME), Joe Lieberman (I-CT), have written to US Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chairman Julius Genachowski, claiming that the ZTE and Huawei are effectively controlled by China’s civilian and military intelligence establishment. According to the legislators, if the proposed deal goes through the Chinese government may be able to use ZTE and Huawei to “manipulate switches, routers, or software embedded in American telecommunications networks so that communications can be disrupted, intercepted, tampered with, or purposely misrouted”. The letter’s three signatories request that the FCC considers the extent to which the proposed telecommunications deal would “pose a real threat to [American] national security”. Based in Shenzen, China, Hwawei is often accused of bing a covert arm of the intelligence wing of the Chinese People’s Liberation Army. The company, which has business concerns in several countries around the world, has attracted the attention of American, British, Indian, and Australian counterintelligence agencies, among others. In early 2008, the US government prohibited Huawei’s purchase of a significant amount of shares in US network security equipment maker 3Com, which supplies telecommunications hardware to the US Department of Defense. Back then, representatives from Huawei described the American government’s security fears as “ludicrous and inaccurate”.

About intelNews
Expert news and commentary on intelligence, espionage, spies and spying, by Dr. Joseph Fitsanakis and Ian Allen.

One Response to Proposed US-Chinese telecom deal worries US legislators

  1. Ove Larsen says:

    Funny ! That the same people don’t have any problems with Israel based firms that take care of all the billing af US phone (and internet ?) users (with there servers in Israel) – while several US people that have greater loyalty to that country – is convicted of spying.

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