Monday, April 2, 2012

Wolf In Sheep's Clothing?

If you're a casual internet user, then the storm rollin' in over Chinese telecommunications giant Huawei may mean little to
you. should!
Y'see, Huawei's involved in a $1.35 billion Ultrafast Broadband Project (UBP) in NZ. As reported by NBR last week, defence analyst Rod Vaughan claims Huawei is almost certainly a front for Chinese intelligence! That's also the collective view of the US, UK and Oz security folk.
Yet naive Noo Zuld is not at all concerned about security, or about Huawei's involvement in our telco sector! Huawei is strong here, having been in NZ since 2005, supplying equipment to Chorus, 2Degrees, Christchurch's Enable Services and the central North Island's Wel Networks as part of the govt's UBP (remember how it talked this up, back in 2010?).
But overseas, Huawei's been blocked from bidding for Oz's $38 billion national broadband network for security reasons, and US stopped it from buying various telcos. NY Times reports US computer security software firm Symantec dissolved a Huawei joint venture, over fears it would prevent it from obtaining US govt classified information about cyberthreats.
NZ-based defence analyst Paul Buchanan once worked for the US Dept of Defence, and believes Huawei is intent on tapping into the top-secret Echelon intelligence network (SO secret, it's on Wiki!) in which NZ exchanges highly classified info with US, UK, Canada and OZ: "China's been lagging behind with signals intel and technical intel...they've got to get a significant capability, and the suspicion is that Huawei is one way of doing this." Buchanan believes US has classified information implicating Huawei in covert activities.
NZ is particularly vulnerable to cyber-espionage, as evident by the hacking of Muddling McCully's private email. This showed how loose our internet security is, when a govt minister can have his private emails hacked into by amateurs. We would be an easy back-door for a malevolent hi-level hack.
NZ does like its sheep...but is Huawei a wolf in sheep's clothing? Is it too late to extricate ourselves from this? Do we need to?
Well, I think so, and here's final proof. Huawei boss Ren Zhengfei (a former People's Liberation Army officer)...looks just like Cheng Zhi, the nasty Chinese spy chief in the tv series "24"...just sayin'!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Interesting piece - love the humorous twist at the end! LOL