National News HUAWEI

Essexyellows

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No different to other countries/states that provide us with services or technology, they have the tech we (allegedly) "need" it.
 

ZeroTheHero

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I don't really know enough about the tech - but is it right that the Chinese are the world leaders in it? And that some of the existing infrastructure is already using it, so if we didn't go with Huawei, we would have to go back and rip that out to start with a new system? If so, seems like we have little choice! We just have to hope that our security services know what they are doing ...
 

Foley

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I don't really know enough about the tech - but is it right that the Chinese are the world leaders in it? And that some of the existing infrastructure is already using it, so if we didn't go with Huawei, we would have to go back and rip that out to start with a new system? If so, seems like we have little choice! We just have to hope that our security services know what they are doing ...
Yes I understood that part of the current infrastructure already uses Huawei.
 

Gary Baldi

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I don't really know enough about the tech - but is it right that the Chinese are the world leaders in it? And that some of the existing infrastructure is already using it, so if we didn't go with Huawei, we would have to go back and rip that out to start with a new system? If so, seems like we have little choice! We just have to hope that our security services know what they are doing ...
From what I saw yesterday, there are certain price points that Huawei have, scalability of the tech and a lack of comparable options in the market. Of course, the price points are questioned because of the corporate structure and the potential backdoors in the tech raise questions of what will see what.

While Trump bleats about Huawei, his alternative delays the roll out of 5G in the UK. Can we wait that long? I'd think not
 

Paul Cannell

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I don't really know enough about the tech - but is it right that the Chinese are the world leaders in it? And that some of the existing infrastructure is already using it, so if we didn't go with Huawei, we would have to go back and rip that out to start with a new system? If so, seems like we have little choice! We just have to hope that our security services know what they are doing ...

I left the network infrastructure sales market 13 months ago, having worked for one of Huawei's competitors.

At that time, Huawei had infrastructure trials providing some form of service in at least 2 uk providers, perhaps 3 (in mixed up order EE, Vodafone, O2 & 3 exist). No other vendor (Nokia, Ericcson and ZTE are worth mentioning) was close in delivery capability or, from evidence from deals, price.

A 3G or 4G network has some effective separation between the 'core' and the 'RAN' (Radio Access Network); the core overseeing the whole network (viewing e2e quality, having a complete view of every user's activity, and being able to record text messages, voice calls and streams as far as capacity permits. RAN can control (subservient to the core), monitor and record stuff only for users attached to it's equipment; note that the Emergency Services Network which is supposed to take over from the existing antediluvian Motorola Push- To-Talk network uses RAN from 2 vendors (yep, 1 is Huawei) under a single core (not Huawei). Multi vendor RAN under a single core is normal.

That's a simplistic outline of the issue. 4G is an IP network. This introduces a multitude of new threats: managing access and certificates, preventing ingress from outside the network, limiting access by network suppliers in a multi-vendor operation and controlling operational roles has become very complex.

In 5G the core and RAN capabilities tend to overlap and the control plane can be partly shared, so limiting capability is harder.

UK networks devolve operations to their suppliers to differing extents, EE, who own ESN tend to be fairly hands-on but the spectrum runs to one UK operator who want their network operated 'like a black-box' and and the trend is towards outsourcing operations, including offshoring, not only for price, but because the technology is so complex.

To be secure an IP network and it's operators should have no direct connection to the external world; because that would defeat the whole purpose, operators need to establish a strong perimeter in technology, operations and support (once given root access to an entity within the network the vendor's staff can upload malware).

The basic question, given that Huawei has previous in exfiltrating information from their customers without asking, has to be whether it is possible (regardless) to prevent a vendor exfiltrating info and potentially doing bad things (shutting down....) from those parts of the network it has legitimate access to.

I believe Huawei is supplying core and RAN to EE, which gives them access to everything in that 5G network; seems bloody risky to me.
 

Paul Cannell

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We just have to hope that our security services know what they are doing ...

There is huge expertise but it's thinly spread. The problem is that the cost of securing the network (removing vendors you can't trust who are already running live networks) has a high price. Why worry when you've already ceded your sovereignty to multi-nationals?
 
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