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Chinese tech giants ZTE, Huawei deemed security threat by US

Products from Chinese tech giants ZTE and Huawei have been deemed a security threat with US lawmakers urging government departments and private companies alike not to use them.

According to the Wall Street Journal, a year-long investigation concluded that people shouldn’t buy devices from the two companies because they could be used for spying on them. It also recommends that a block be put on any mergers and acquisitions involving the two companies.

Both companies maintain that they have been cooperative throughout the investigation and that any attempt by the US to block their products would be detrimental to the US economy.

“Purporting that Huawei is somehow uniquely vulnerable to cyber-mischief ignores technical and commercial realities, recklessly threatens American jobs and innovation, does nothing to protect national security,” said Huawei spokesperson William Plummer.

According to Mike Rogers, the chair of the committee tasked with investigating the two companies, “We simply cannot trust such vital systems to companies with known ties to the Chinese state, a country that is the largest perpetrator of cyberespionage against the US.”

If that’s starting to seem a little bit paranoid, things start to go dull tin-foil hat when the report notes that there is no direct proof that Chinese-made devices are used for spying. It does however note that some companies have reported “odd or alerting incidents” when using the products.

Less paranoid is the assertion that the Chinese government could demand sensitive information from the two companies. Huawei in particular is likely to have close ties to the Chinese government. It’s founder is a former officer in the country’s army.

Were the US to put a ban on government agencies using Huawei products, it would be following the example of Australia, which excluded Huawei from tendering for contracts with NBN Co, a government-owned corporation that is managing the construction of the National Broadband Network.

The Chinese company has also faced criticism for providing equipment to Iran.

Author | Nur Bremmen: Staff reporter

Nur Bremmen: Staff reporter
Nur is an enigma with a passion for creating words. He recently entered a love affair with technology and chorizo sausages. He travels a lot -- you catch him, if you can, at a Silicon Cape event every now and again. More
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  • gomi

    I agree. I can’t go back to Windows 7. Windows 8/8.1 is insanely better. People just demand improvement without change.

  • Fantasm

    What I find so terrible about windows 8:
    [1]-The ugly Metro interface…
    [2]-Needing to pay extra to have Media Center as an addon…
    [3]-Microsoft forcing MS accounts on people.
    [4]-The Windows store and it’s slew of worthless apps…
    [5]-The ugly plain lame desktop without Aero glass…
    [6]-The need to go through multiple downloads, upgrades, and such to re-install it.
    [7]-It handled my 4 screens terribly.
    [8]-Trying to force me to use lame windows apps even though I have better legacy ones.
    [9]-It just looks so ugly I’s be embarrassed to leave my screen on…
    [10]-It doesn’t run several programs that Windows 7 runs fine…
    [11]-It doesn’t like the sound driver for my Motherboard.
    [12]-No single compelling reason to upgrade from Windows 7. At best, it can be tweaked and poked and made to run like a plain version of windows 7, something that Windows 7 still does better…
    [13]- I use the Start Menu…

  • Bobby Edwards

    Here are my thoughts on problems.

    1 – That would be the Modern UI
    2 – Windows has always had things that were added based on the version
    3 – So use a local account,, but when you find most of the Windows 8 benefits don’t work, remember you wanted it
    4 – That has nothing do with the OS, like the other App stores that is what people write.
    5 – The desktop is basically the same, so they took away a resource grabbing feature you liked, so sad.
    6 – What version of windows does not have multiple downloads? And why are you needing to re-install, there are other ways to fix a problem.
    7 – Who knows, handles my 3 screen with no problems
    8 – Nothing forces you to use Windows apps, if you don’t liek an app uninstall it.
    9 – What you are Embarassed about is the fact that when the screen is on, people can see you are not doing anything, so lock it, or run something put an Excel workbook up, so that folks passing by thing you know what it is for.
    10 – I would like to know what it does not run, as I have yet to find anything that won’t run, including some very old software.
    11 – so you failed to run the compatababilty test to check your hard ware, and now that is the fault of the OS?
    12 – So keep running Windows 7, there was no forced update to run Windows 8, this is not like when you went to school and had to give up diapers, this was a choice you made.
    13 – So add a toolbar to the taskbar that points to the programs folder, and when you click it, it will do exactly what clicking all programs do in Windows 7.

  • Bobby Edwards

    So let me get this right, you look at 4 pictures, and because none have the control panel in it, you declare it as completely dead? Does that mean all the other great things we don’t see in these four pictures are gone too? Are you telling me that only the two dozed items shown will be included in Windows 9?
    Wow, what a thorough and complete investigation you have done, remind me never to read any review with your name at the top, or gearburn.com, if this is the best they can get.

  • Bryan

    I agree.. Windows 8.1 is the best version of Windows yet..

    All the people complaining about Windows 8 sound like the fools who whined about the new Start menu in Windows 95.. “Where’s my Program manager?” … “I hate this start button crap”.. “I’m gonna switch to OS/2”.. etc..

    Get over it.. Things change. Embrace change or get left behind.

    Windows 8 is fantastic. It definitely is a learning curve but once you get the feel for it and learn how to get around, it works beautifully.. It’s significantly faster than any prior version of Windows even on lesser hardware. If you sign in with a Microsoft account and sync your settings you never have to worry about those settings again.. Get a new PC and sign in,..watch your start screen rebuild itself, your favorites get reinstated, your email configuration setup automatically, messages, contacts, and calendar appts.. If you use OneDrive all your files will be there ready to access. No more backups to restore..

    Just exactly how hard is it to click Start and a tile on the start screen vs. Start and a menu item? huh? 2 clicks. Just what is so difficult about Windows 8?

  • Stanley McLenna

    You are literally too stupid to insult. That is the most pathetic list of reasons to hate it. The design part though I can understand, but everything else just sounds like a spoiled brat. May god have mercy on your soul.

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