UK Body Issues Stark Huawei Warning

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LONDON – The body that oversees the security risks posed by the use of Huawei equipment in the UK issued a stern warning Thursday. However, it did not call for an outright ban of the Chinese telecom giant’s equipment (via Financial Times).

No ‘Material Progress’ by Huawei

In its extensive report, the board said:

The oversight board currently has not seen anything to give it confidence in Huawei’s ability to bring about change via its transformation programme and will require sustained evidence of better software engineering and cyber security quality.

The board added that Huawei had not made any “material progress” in fixing security issues it had previously highly. It said that it had “continued to identify concerning issues in Huawei’s approach to software development.” However, it did not find evidence that the Chinese state had put backdoors into that software.

Only ‘Limited Assurances’ Against Risks

The report concluded:

Overall, the Oversight Board can only provide limited assurance that
all risks to UK national security from Huawei’s involvement in the
UK’s critical networks can be sufficiently mitigated long-term.

This was the fifth annual report from the Huawei Cyber Security Evaluation Centre’s oversight board. It is led by Ciarian Martin, who is an executive board member of Britain’s signal’s intelligence agency, GCHQ.

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