US Warns UK Over Huawei and 5G Wireless

-edited

US Sec. of State Mike Pompeo warns the UK about 5G wireless. Pompeo threatens to end defense cooperation with the UK.

Via the Guardian Live Blog, Pompeo warns the UK that Huawei 5G role could put defense cooperation with US at risk.

Here are the main points from the press conference given by Mike Pompeo, the US secretary of state, and Jeremy Hunt, the UK foreign secretary.

Pompeo implied that the UK could put defense cooperation with the US at risk if it allowed Huawei a role in operating its 5G infrastructure. In his opening remarks Pompeo said:

We discussed at some length the importance of secure 5G networks. I will have a little more to say on that this afternoon, but I’m confident that each of our two nations will choose a path which will ensure security of our networks.

Then, when asked if a decision by the UK to allow Huawei a role in constructing its 5G infrastructure, would affect the special relationship, he replied:

I have great confidence that the United Kingdom will never take an action that will break the special relationship.

With respect to 5G, we will continue to have technical discussions. We are making our views very well known from America’s perspective.

Each country has a sovereign right to make its own decision about how to deal with the challenge.

The United States has an obligation to ensure that, [in] places where we operate, places where American information is, places where we have our national security risks, that they operate inside trusted networks. And that’s what we will do.

Pompeo Hammers Jeremy Corbyn

Labour Leader Jeremy Corbyn is a socialist who admires former Venezuela leader Hugo Chavez. Pompeo had this to say.

It is disgusting to see leaders, not only in the United Kingdom but in the United States as well, who continue to support the murderous dictator Maduro.

It is not in either of our country’s best interests for those leaders to continue to advocate on their behalf. The Venezuelan people have spoken through their constitutional mechanism. They have put Juan Guaido as their interim president, and he is the duly elected leader there. And Maduro is on borrowed time.

Hunt Agrees

This is a country where three million people have fled the country, GDP has gone down by 40% in the last four years, people can’t access basic medicine, people are rifling through rubbish bags to get food in the streets. [Shadow chancellor] John McDonnell describes this as socialism in action and I think people need to draw their own conclusions about what his own plans might be for the UK.

Yes, this is the same Labour Party leader that Theresa May is in bed with to deliver Brexit.

5G Issues

In regards to 5G the US is woefully behind. Security threats may be overblown.

Because much of Europe is on previous versions of Huawei, there is a clear backward compatible way forward, but only if those nations using Huawei select its option as the way forward. Otherwise, it may take years to upgrade, and possibly to inferior technology.

For further discussion of 5G issues, please see:

  1. EU Pokes Trump Again, This Time Over Huawei' s 5G Technology
  2. Trump Tweets Promote US 5G "Even 6G" ASAP

Ultimately, the EU nations and the UK will make their own decisions. Some of them will undoubtedly select Huawei.

Expect Trump to fume.

Mike "Mish" Shedlock

Comments (43)
No. 1-17
Menaquinone
Menaquinone

5G cell tower radiation causes cancer. High intensity towers will be located 1/4 mile apart. You cannot escape unless you leave the city.

SMF
SMF

It may or it may not cause harm, but anything that allows the government to further spy on us will get my thumbs way down.

LawrenceBird
LawrenceBird

What does Pompeo or the US care what the UK uses for their public network? Defense should be using a secured private network and not mobile p hones

Irondoor
Irondoor

The NSA's budget is $12 Billion. The UK's communication spying budget is around $2 Billion (10% of which is paid for by the NSA). Just think about it: $14 Billion for one purpose; listening to every communication on the planet. We listen to the UK communications and they listen to ours. They trade info back and forth on each country's citizens. They can listen to every conversation you are having, no matter how you are having it unless it is person to person (and I wonder about that) they listen to your conversations through your cell phone mic even when it is turned off. Any Windows computer system (which is most of them) in the world has a backdoor which Microsoft identifies to the NSA. Which the NSA uses to access said computer system.

Whether it is Microsoft, the NSA, the UK's version of the NSA, Russia, China, or anyone else, no communication is secure. No computer system that is connected to the internet is secure. No phone conversation is secure unless it is some super-duper government/military one.

That's just the way it is. Deal with it.

Tengen
Tengen

I remember when we used to pretend that "free" countries stuck together due to mutual admiration for liberty. Coalitions of the willing, and all that nonsense.

Now the pretense is gone and it's outright bullying. Not to worry, I'm sure this won't backfire in any way.

Casual_Observer
Casual_Observer

Huawei is 50% owned by the Chinese government. So all communications on Huawei 5G will be known by the Chinese.

mark0f0
mark0f0

There's nothing inherently riskier about 5G Huawei equipment versus 4G equipment.

Why then is there not a huge push to eliminate already installed Huawei 4G equipment?

The whole narrative reeks of a scam by 3-letter agencies.

Mish
Mish

Editor

"There's nothing inherently riskier about 5G Huawei equipment versus 4G equipment."

Bingo This is not about security except that the US isn't in control of it. The NSA could ask or even force US companies to do its dirty work.

The US cannot force China.

There is a theoretical risk that a software upgrade down the road could do something malicious.

ReadyKilowatt
ReadyKilowatt

Chances are pretty good if you're in the US some of your data is going through Huawei equipment. A few months ago my employer upgraded our WAN, some of which runs over leased fiber. In the data hut there were at least two providers' racks with Huawei switches. The company has regular appearances at industry conferences, usually with a very large semi trailer with working demo hardware.

I don't really know where to come down on this issue. If you're running a modern web browser and visit up-to-date web servers, your data is end to end encrypted. The only information you might get from a switch is source and destination, and even then probably won't matter much. This really smacks of sour grapes from Cisco, Juniper, Nokia (Alcatel-Lucent) and the rest of the fat margin license fee based hardware suppliers.

If you're really paranoid, run an Onion router and be done with it.

WildBull
WildBull

As some one said above, the only secure computer is one that is not on the Internet. I think that the NSA found something. The problem is not in a software update. It is not about snooping. Consider a kill switch in the hardware. Your whole communications backbone could be turned into iron in an instant with no recourse but to replace every piece of Huawei equipment. THAT is the risk. Total chaos and economic disruption.

avidremainer
avidremainer

What are the alternatives to Huawei? Are they as good? Are they competitive? No one who is against Huawei has suggested any other systems that should be used. It is obvious to me that we shouldn't use Huawei if there is another system produced in the west, but what is the alternative?

C. P. Roberts
C. P. Roberts

I always get the biggest kick out of the stock market highs. When they are going to have some major bad news they want people to fear they run the market up to the highs and then run it down to have everyone fear the sky is falling. Hopefully one day the pensions and insurance companies fall beneath their own load of crap!!

Sechel
Sechel

I don't see how it works long term if we keep threatening our allies. Sooner or later we'll want something and we'll find out we no longer have allies. Trump risks burning a lot of britches

astroboy
astroboy

I kinda think the bottom line here is:

Do you want the US or the Chinese government spying on you?

The answer should be obvious.

Webej
Webej

"Cannot trust Huawei and possible back doors"" Translation: We don't want equipment around circumventing our own funnels with court-mandated secret spying.

"Huawei sub-marine cables could be tapped by Chinese nuclear subs" Translation: We are using/want to use subs to tap communications anywhere.

"We have spied on Huawei and know they can't be trusted" Translation: We spy better than anyone, and we alone are entitled to spy, because we are good, spying in the service of our own corporate oligarchy and enforcement wars.

"Russia is unleashing unfair hybrid warfare on us all over" Translation: We have been spending millions on viruses and influencing social media, and we are now worried that others are catching on.

Joe in Missouri
Joe in Missouri

Reposted in Missouri Free Press: MFP Commentary:

From the authoritarian communist country often known as California: “Couple must pay nearly $600G for removing oak tree from their property, judge rules.”

FWIW this type of socialist/communist implementation of the 1st plank of the communist manifesto occurs in all 50 countries that make up these United States.

Keep doing nothing and you will see your states current implementation of the 1st plank of the communist manifesto, become as egregious as what CA has done.

Why is this listed under “christianity”? Because christians are supporting the first plank of the communist manifesto, a plan to kill all christians on Earth, and to bring in the Satanic New World Order. Talk about “useful idiots”.

This story of the US government (under direction from the United nations) going to insane lengths (such as making it illegal to stop 5g on health concerns) to make sure it is implemented, cements my certainly that 5G is being implemented for very dark and nefarious purposes. Both health wise and privacy wise.

~MF P

Je'Ri
Je'Ri

Minor point, but where does Pompeo get his facts? Guaido was not duly elected to anything other than his seat as a Federal Deputy for the State of Vargas in the Venezela National Assembly, and that with only 26% of the vote in that district. He pretty much proclaimed himself the head of state of Venezuela.

You would think the Trump administration, its own legitimacy called into question every day, would be a little more careful in deciding how one becomes head of state in a country; by the reasoning they apply to Venezuela, Nancy Pelosi could appoint herself POTUS, and who would we be to complain if 54 other countries piled on to endorse it?