What’s next after Congress’ report on Huawei, ZTE
Now that a Congressional committee has dumped on Huawei Technologies and ZTE, what’s the future of these and other Chinese-based IT firms in Western countries?
This story from ComputerWorld U.S. suggests that in the United States there will be more scrutiny over some of the companies in infrastrucutre plays, but it also notes that some companies are able to continue business seemingly untouched — PC and server manufacturer Lenovo, for example.
It’s one of the oddities that the alleged Chinese IT spying threat is worrisome for routers and switches, but not the stuff we use to enter valuable data with. At the same time, Cisco Systems Inc. and other American-based firms have large research operations in China.
(A Lenovo ThinkPad W700)
The House intelligence committee report puts enterprises and carriers in a quandry: There is no doubt nations (including the U.S. and Canada) spy on each other. The Chinese government allegedly has an advantage in being able leverage close ties to their manufacturers. It’s hard to prove it — and if the U.S. has concrete evidence it wouldn’t likely spill the beans in public but would tell politicians behind closed doors. Oh, that’s what happened with this report. It might be easier to swallow if President Obama had signed an executive order putting the weight of his office behind this.
Meanwhile, in the U.S. the report will put a chill on sales of Huawai and ZTE networking gear, but not their handsets. This will presumably scotch any attempt by Huawei to start selling its enterprise switches here. So far it is only selling those in the U.S. I also doubt, however, the report will restrain Canadian carriers from buying their telecom equipment.

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