A new law that was announced in the British parliament on Tuesday shows that large fines could be faced by British telecom companies if they are unable to tighten security in their networks.
Enhancing the security in the 5G and full-fiber networks in eth United Kingdom is the ultimate aim of the designing of the proposed Telecommunications Security Bill. The equipment and software that are used by British telecom companies at phone mast sites and telephone exchanges need to meet up to some strict standards and this is the responsibility of the at phone mast sites and telephone exchanges, says the new proposed bill.
“This will be a significant step to protect the U.K. from hostile cyber activity by state actors or criminals,” the Department of Culture, Media, and Sport said in a statement. “Over the past two years the government has attributed a range of cyber attacks to Russia and China, as well as North Korea and Iranian actors.”
Telecom companies could be fined as much as up to 10 per cent of their turnover or £100,000 ($133,000) a day if companies are unable to comply with the rules, under the new law if it is passed, the British government said.
The bill “will give the U.K. one of the toughest telecoms security regimes in the world and allow us to take the action necessary to protect our networks,” said British Digital Secretary Oliver Dowden.
The bill specifically names telecom equipment made by the Chinese telecom equipment making giant Huawei in which the government will gain special powers to indict and fine telecom companies if they are found to be using equipment made by the Chinese firm in the 5G networks of the country.
Starting at the end of 2020, no new equipment made by the Chinese tech giant will be allowed to be purchased by British telecom firms, the government had said in July. Back then the government had also mandated that telecom companies will be required to phase out any existing Huawei equipment from their entire networks by 2027.
This decision was taken by the UK government over concerns that the equipment supplied by Huawei could turn out to be a national threat to the country.
Huawei has repeatedly denied such charges and said that its equipment does not pose any security threat to the national security of the UK or any other country whose telecom companies use its equipment.
″It’s disappointing that the government is looking to exclude Huawei from the 5G roll out,” Huawei Vice President Victor Zhang said in a statement.
“This decision is politically-motivated and not based on a fair evaluation of the risks. It does not serve anyone’s best interests as it would move Britain into the digital slow lane and put at risk the government’s levelling up agenda,” Zhang added.
(Adapted from FinancialPost.com)