The political propaganda against Huawei devices continues in the land down under, as the Australian Foreign Minister Marise Payne has ruled that the ban against Huawei’s 5G devices will continue to be implemented by the federal government. “We have taken the strongest advice from intelligence agencies in this country, the strongest technical advice as to the best way to protect Australia’s national interests in the establishment of a 5G network here,” emphasized Payne. Huawei has been a recipient of diplomatic attacks by the United States, while Canada detained one of its officials due to the controversy regarding the privacy of Huawei devices.
Australia has allowed Huawei LTE devices within its territory for years, but 5G networking is a whole different ball game according to Australian authorities. “(5G is) comprehensive infrastructure change in the way that [Australia does] business, and the way that our societies will function. One of the most fundamentally important infrastructure decisions a country will make. It was important to show that we could make a decision around where companies’ linkages led back to, what kind of policies they held that were in close association with a given country where they were based,” explained Tobias Feakin, Australia’s Ambassador for Cyber Affairs.
Australia is serious when it comes to its efforts of increasing the cybersecurity defense capabilities. The former Foreign Minister, Julie Bishop also suggested before that cyberspace defense should be treated no different to the military and traditional civil defense organizations and protocol handling. Australia is keen on keeping its citizens updated of its actions of securing the nation and its IT infrastructure from foreign-made devices that can interfere with its communications systems.
“As a member of the National Security Committee, that’s the advice upon which I rely. We took a long time to consider the implications and to come to that decision, and we have where appropriate and possible been prepared to share that information in appropriate circumstances — not publicly, in intelligence terms. So we are resolved on the position that Australia has taken. Other countries will make their own decisions … the one Australia has made is not directed at any one company, or two companies, or five companies, or eight companies. It’s directed at protecting our national interest,” added Foreign Minister Payne.
On their part, Huawei, represented by its Corporate Director for Public Affairs, Jeremy Mitchell expressed dissatisfaction about Australia’s treatment of the company’s products and services. Huawei wished to defend itself from baseless accusations of their products are used for espionage, and strongly claims that their offerings are secure and private contrary to the claims of their critics.
“The myth falsely suggests the edge or radio access layer of the network can’t be sufficiently secured in a 5G network. The motivation for this position is to give justification on why Huawei was allowed to become the largest 4G vendor in Australia (with over half of Australians using some sort of Huawei equipment for mobile broadband) but is now all of a sudden not allowed to deliver 5G? The US provided the perfect answer and this myth was born after the PM’s visit to the USA in February 2018. Problem is what they said (and Turnbull is now continuing to say) just isn’t true.” said Mitchell.
Huawei is a globally competitive company that uses standards for 5G and smooth delivery of critical communications technology in the International market. There is no solid proof that a Huawei device can be single-handedly blamed for an issue of espionage or a data breach. There is a rumor spreading in the web claiming such, but not fully substantiated by a credible cybersecurity company dealing with cyber attack aftermaths.