Newsletters
News & Information for Technology Purchasers NewsFactor Sites:       NewsFactor.com     Enterprise Security Today     CRM Daily     Business Report     Sci-Tech Today  
   
This ad will display for the next 20 seconds. Click for more information, or
Home Enterprise I.T. Cloud Computing Applications Hardware More Topics...
World Wide Web
Tame your scariest paperwork. Find Out How
Average Rating:
Rate this article:  
Sprint, Seeking OK on Merger, Agrees To Shun Huawei Gear
Sprint, Seeking OK on Merger, Agrees To Shun Huawei Gear

By Jennifer LeClaire
March 29, 2013 12:15PM

    Bookmark and Share
Although a House investigation concluded there were "credible reports" of Huawei's illegal behavior, there is no conclusive evidence that either Huawei or ZTE are installing telecom equipment with hidden codes to transmit information back to China. But with the recent back-and-forthing between the U.S. and China over cyber-security, the issue remains.
 



Sprint and Softbank, the company planning to acquire the third-largest U.S. carrier, are committed to meeting national security concerns to make their merger a reality. The companies made it clear to Washington that they will no longer purchase or use equipment the Chinese telecom giant manufactures.

According to The New York Times, Sprint-Softbank's agreement with the U.S. government would allow national security officials to monitor changes to the company's system of routers, servers, and switches, among other equipment and processes. Softbank has offered $20 billion to acquire most of Sprint but needs U.S. government approval.

"I have met with Softbank and Sprint regarding this merger and was assured they would not integrate Huawei in to the Sprint network and would take mitigation efforts to replace Huawei equipment in the Clearwire network," said Rep. Mike Rogers, R-Mich., chairman of the House Intelligence Committee. "I expect them to make the same assurances before any approval of the deal in the CFIUS process."

CFIUS is the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States, a federal government inter-agency panel that reviews the national security implications of foreign investment in the U.S.

Spying on U.S. Communications

What's the problem with Huawei? Last October, a House Intelligence Committee report warned that buying Huawei Technologies products poses a security risk to the nation. Huawei vehemently opposed the allegations, which include visa fraud and job bias. The report also called out ZTE, another Chinese telecom firm.

The overarching allegation is that China could use equipment these companies manufacture to spy on U.S. communications systems and threaten U.S. technology infrastructure. Some U.S. analysts are saying the report is steeped in protectionism and neither China nor Huawei is taking the report lying down.

Although the House investigation concluded there are "credible reports" of Huawei's illegal behavior, there is no conclusive evidence that either Huawei or ZTE are installing telecom equipment with hidden codes to transmit information back to China. But with the recent back-and-forthing between the U.S. and China government over cyber-security, the issue remains at the fore.

Is the Threat Real?

Paul Henry, a security and forensic analyst at Lumension, told us not to be mistaken -- there is danger here.

"This isn't a case of the government being overly paranoid, though I might also argue that there is no such thing when it comes to cyber-security," Henry said. "It is very possible that back doors are being built into the hardware shipped by the Chinese."

As Henry sees it, the real danger here is that if Chinese companies, deliberately or not, are leaving easy back doors into their products, then malware could be executed at the firmware and peripheral level.

"What that boils down to is a piece of malware executed at a level below the operating system, where it is virtually undetectable by just about every cyber-security product on the market today," Henry said.

"There is some amount of doubt in the security community about whether this sort of attack is even practically possible, but I assure you, it is. It was demonstrated in two proof-of-concept rootkits, Red Pill and Blue Pill, by Joanna Rutkowska at Black Hat in 2006. There is a real danger here that everyone -- not just the government -- should be considering when purchasing IT equipment manufactured overseas."
 

Tell Us What You Think
Comment:

Name:



Salesforce.com is the market and technology leader in Software-as-a-Service. Its award-winning CRM solution helps 82,400 customers worldwide manage and share business information over the Internet. Experience CRM success. Click here for a FREE 30-day trial.


 World Wide Web
1.   Wall Street Journal Hacked Again
2.   Internet of Things Comes to DIYers
3.   Social Media Haters Speak Up
4.   New Technology Defeats Privacy Efforts
5.   Verizon Launches Rewards Program


advertisement
Radical.FM's Freemium Biz Model
Online radio startup asks for donations.
Average Rating:
Facebook Social Experiment Irks Us
Secretive test was legal, but ethical?
Average Rating:
Social Media Haters Speak Up
Survey says, now showing a little love.
Average Rating:


advertisement
Product Information and Resources for Technology You Can Use To Boost Your Business

Network Security Spotlight
Wall Street Journal Hacked Again
Hacked again. That’s the story at the Wall Street Journal this week as the newspaper reports that the computer systems housing some of its news graphics were breached. Customers not affected -- yet.
 
Dropbox for Business Beefs Up Security
Dropbox is upping its game for business users. The cloud-based storage and sharing company has rolled out new security, search and other features to boost its appeal for businesses.
 
34 European Banks Hit by Android-Skirting Malware
Criminals have been finding gaping holes in Android-based two-factor authentication systems that banks around the world are using. The result: 34 banks in four European countries have been hit.
 

Enterprise Hardware Spotlight
Microsoft Makes Design Central to Its Future
Over the last four years, Microsoft has doubled the number of designers it employs, putting a priority on fashioning devices that work around people's lives -- and that are attractive and cool.
 
Contrary to Report, Lenovo's Staying in Small Windows Tablets
Device maker Lenovo has clarified a report that indicated it is getting out of the small Windows tablet business -- as in the ThinkPad 8 and the 8-inch Miix 2. But the firm said it is not exiting that market.
 
Seagate Unveils Networked Drives for Small Businesses
Seagate is out with five new networked attached storage products aimed at small businesses. The drives are for companies with up to 50 workers, and range in capacity from two to 20 terabytes.
 

Navigation
NewsFactor Network
Home/Top News | Enterprise I.T. | Cloud Computing | Applications | Hardware | Mobile Tech | Big Data | Communications
World Wide Web | Network Security | Data Storage | CRM Systems | Microsoft/Windows | Apple/Mac | Linux/Open Source | Personal Tech
Press Releases
NewsFactor Network Enterprise I.T. Sites
NewsFactor Technology News | Enterprise Security Today | CRM Daily

NewsFactor Business and Innovation Sites
Sci-Tech Today | NewsFactor Business Report

NewsFactor Services
FreeNewsFeed | Free Newsletters

About NewsFactor Network | How To Contact Us | Article Reprints | Careers @ NewsFactor | Services for PR Pros | Top Tech Wire | How To Advertise

Privacy Policy | Terms of Service
© Copyright 2000-2014 NewsFactor Network. All rights reserved. Article rating technology by Blogowogo. Member of Accuserve Ad Network.