Breaking with the U.S.
stance on Huawei, the U.K. will let the company participate in building its 5G
network but said it would put a secure framework in place to protect the
network from high-risk vendors.
”We want world-class connectivity as soon as possible but
this must not be at the expense of our national security,” Digital
Secretary Baroness Morgan said in a release, in response to findings of a Telecoms
Supply Chain Review by the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) released
a result of the review, the U.K. government has determined it must place tight restrictions on
high risk vendors. “High risk vendors never have been and never will be in our most
sensitive networks,” said Morgan.
Restrictions include excluding vendors like Huawei from “sensitive
core” parts of the network and putting a 35 percent cap on their share of the U.K. 5G market. The NSCS
will provide “guidance to operators on implementing decision” via upcoming
package will ensure that the U.K. has a very strong, practical and technically
sound framework for digital security in the years ahead,” NCSC Chief Executive
Ciaran Martin said in the release.
measures are not likely to assuage the security concerns of the U.S., which has
bans on Huawei
amid allegations that China might force the company to spy on others.
“The potential for
spying via backdoors in 5G networks is a major security concern regardless of
who is supplying the infrastructure and hackers will be the first to take
advantage of these anyway they can,” said Sivan Rauscher, CEO at SAM. “The next
generation of mobile networks remains highly vulnerable due to the amount of
critical services and devices that will depend on it, the sheer volumes of data
it will hold and because 5G is new technology, so it is less regulated and
Smart products have
proliferated in homes and businesses and already frequent attacks on those products,
“will majorly accelerate with 5G,” Rauscher said.
“The industry is really
scared about large scale hacks because enterprise networks can be accessed via
customers’ homes,” she said, calling on “all key players, including telecom
operators and device manufacturers, must take responsibility to best protect
their networks, their devices and their customers.”