AT&T’s CEO reveals Huawei’s Achilles heels

Here’s why it does not make any sense to partner with China’s Huawei, as explained lucidly by AT&T Inc’s Chief Executive Randall Stephenson.

Randall Stephenson, AT&T Inc’s Chief Executive has disclosed, once you partner with China’s Huawei Technologies Co, it becomes very difficult to stop doing business with it due to constrains from its supply chain.

The revelation, an eye opener, could provide some vital clues for carriers as to why it makes sense to avoid doing business with the embattled firm which intelligence agencies say is a front for Chinese intelligence.

“If you have deployed Huawei as your 4G network, Huawei is not allowing interoperability to 5G — meaning if you are 4G, you are stuck with Huawei for 5G,” said Stephenson. “When the Europeans say we got a problem — that’s their problem. They really don’t have an option to go to somebody else.”

The United States is spreading awareness of the grave strategic dangers that lurk in being associated with Huawei. It is pushing other countries to drop Huawei from their networks.

According to Stephenson, the U.S. government could do a better job by explaining the security risks involved with regard to Huawei.

“The biggest risk is not that the Chinese government might listen in on our conversations or mine our data if we use their equipment,” opined Stephenson. The biggest risk is that within a decade, the majority of U.S. industries across segments will be dependent on 5G. This emerging technology will be the backbone and will help underpin autonomous vehicles.

“If that much of infrastructure will be attached to this kind of technology do we want to be cautious about who is the underlying company behind that technology. We damn well better be,” said Stephenson.

Huawei did not respond to a request for comment Wednesday.

Intelligence agencies have warned that next-generation 5G equipment, which many telecoms experts see as being more vulnerable to attack than previous technologies, could be exploited by the Chinese government for spying, if the equipment is supplied by Huawei.

Huawei is the vehicle for China’s ruling Communist party and its intelligence apparatus to monitor trade, commerce and military activities worldwide. No wonder, China’s Huawei has grown rapidly to become the world’s biggest maker of telecoms equipment.

As far as the installation of 5G equipment in the U.S. is concerned, the equipment will be supplied by Ericsson and Nokia. According to Strayer, they are safer alternatives to Huawei.

Huawei continues to face growing scrutiny over its equipment.

In 2017, China passed a law which forces its citizens and companies to act as an intelligence gathering mechanism and to provide the same on demand.

Several countries have restricted Huawei’s access to their markets.


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