seeing the reasoning includes violations against ITAR (International Traffic in Arms Regulations) its difficult to see how the US isnt creating some sort of whipping boy for its own agenda. Bluecoat, Intel, IBM, and hundreds of other companies have been accused of ITAR violations as well yet were not subjected to a 7 month long PR campaign from Washington to ablate them from the economic playing field. This feels like telco's flexing their close relationship to washington and pushing for a scorched-earth policy rather than be caught completely unprepared for 5G. "if we cant sell it, you cant have it" sounds rather less like a capitalist nation.
it also bears remembering that none of their CEO's were detained in foreign airports and led to Jail to await US extradition.
While 5G may be a new front in this battle, US suspicion of Huawei goes back a long time -- at least as far back as the Bush administration. The current administration might be antagonistic toward China, but in no sense did they invent the war against Huawei.
I'm not at all surprised that suspected violations wouldn't result in a public war against US-based companies. What would be the point in that? The violations would be addressed quietly I think.
I remember a few years back where all of sudden it was made an issue that members of the Danish parlament had Lenovo laptops. I think it turned out to be unfounded. Today the largest 4G network here in Denmark is made by Huawei; though they have lost the bid for the 5G network to Ericsson.
Not that I find the Chinese government trustworthy but from a non-US perspective it just looks like two governments throwing mud with a certain disconnect from any technical veracity.
* Maybe they get laughed at for the incompetence or negligence regarding that particular issue but that doesn't seem to affect their bottom line or the striving consultancy ecosystem surrounding those products.
There are not many things I agree with the current US Administration on but their hardline stance on China is certainly one of them.
Am I being overly paranoid? Or should I treat it as basically trustworthy as any other major brand of computer?
The system requires a special app to update drivers and so forth, but frankly this is not additional security exposure, since Huawei bits are all over the machine to begin with.
I'm sure y'all got opinions :-)
Not saying that you should trust Chinese companies, but the notion that they're any worst by speculation in the face of evidence for the alternative's being complicate in spying on their users is rather absurd. People can't shake off the good-guy-bad-guy narrative, can they?
Not sure how that happened.
Because I’m one of the people the 5E apparatus is trying to protect, and if my local spy agency got in touch with me to ask me for my data, I’d give it to them without a second thought.
I mean, sounds like the system is working then?
That's a pretty bold assumption you're making.
You might support actions such as the NSA spying on the porn habits of Islamic 'radicalizers' planning to release the information in efforts to discredit them.  But consider that who governments consider good and whom they consider bad is something very much subject to change. For instance are you aware of the now infamous letter the FBI sent to MLK in an effort to blackmail him and even drive him to suicide? 
These are the people that you'd so happily give your information to. The notions of a black and white, good and evil, world is something out of Hollywood. In reality there are good and 'evil' sides to every nation and organization. And when you submit yourself to any, you don't get to pick who your information is made available to or how it will be used.
Finally there is the matter of risk:reward. You stand an extremely low probability of being victimized at any given point in your life. And even if you are victimized it will be likely to be a petty local offense such as burglary, robbery, assault, etc. These are not the sort of actions that national intelligence agencies are tasked with preventing, which is more along the lines of terrorism and national security dangers. By being so happy to turn over all information about yourself you expose some risk that that information will end up being used against you. How does this increased risk compare against the decreased risk due to whatever value your personal information provides? This is not really possible to measure, so each individual must decide for himself. But I find it difficult to imagine that this is a beneficial exchange.
 - https://www.nytimes.com/2014/07/21/us/politics/edward-snowde...
 - https://www.cnet.com/news/nsa-offers-details-on-loveint-that...
 - https://www.huffpost.com/entry/nsa-porn-muslims_n_4346128 (unfortunate source, but it is a well written and sourced article)
 - https://www.nytimes.com/2014/11/16/magazine/what-an-uncensor...
I believe the best outcome, by far, of Snowden's revelations was to bring questions like this into the public sphere, and thus hopefully increase oversight. I think this is happening in all areas, private and public.
I would be pretty surprised (although not amazed) if a Facebook engineer could easily read my Messenger messages now and generally stalk me, although I suspect it was very very easy for them to do it a few years ago.
The built-in file browser shows ads related to random conversations I've had(not related to searches or my general interests) way to often for me to consider it a coincidence.
I'm seriously considering getting an iphone again, just because I trust Apple a bit more(and only a little).
But there would be no way in hell I would do sensitive work on Huawei or Xiaomi laptop.
Some of them are badly translated, updates to a simple calender app suddenly requires ridiculous permissions.
And worst of all, enabling USB debugging test apps through Android Studio requires a Mi Account. Maybe I'm paranoid but I can't think of a reason other than corporate espionage.
If you have substantial business interests in China, you’d prefer a non Chinese brand laptop.
If you are more worried about IRS going after your financial records, US based advertisers tracking your online activities or NSA monitoring your contacts with people in Arab countries, huawei may be a better choice, since it won’t work with IRS, Facebook or NSA.
a) It's not a simple relativism.
b) Brands are tied at different levels to their nations, and go after people from different kinds of reasons.
I suggest given the controversy, there's probably a lot of legit risk about using Huawei for any reason.
Unless you're doing something really dangerous, I would not be worried about Windows. There are zillions of tax evaders and otherwise criminals who 'use computers' and don't get caught for that reason in the US.
If you're going to do something really bad, well large American corporations may help out the Feds.
Carriers, web sites and other such places are probably more of a risk than your OS.
The security concern over Huawei is legit, even if there's economic war, and a hint of jingoism mixed in.
For my children, I chose mail adresses in India (zoho.com) because I am french; not that I trust India more than France but because being spied by India will certainly be less harmful for French citizens than being spied by some European country. I will myself never use a French service or app.
I really laugh when I see my country releasing some new "trustful" services for French citizens: maybe it is true but I have very little to win (not being spied by a country that does not care about me anyway) and too much to lose (if a country is about to annoy you it will certainly be yours).
If I were a chinese citizen I would certainly not use Chinese products for the very same reason, but an American citizen should be more confident in using such services than in using american ones! Why do American people want to be spied by the very single country they really have to fear?
China is indeed mainly focused internally, but there's no limit to how far they'll go in support of those ends. China attacked Google, Yahoo, Adobe, many others, using a zero-day IE exploit.
Of course they'll use your laptop as part of a botnet, C&C proxy, ransomware vector, etc. There's no benefit of the doubt remaining.
Are you Google, Yahoo or Adobe though?
If you're a very high value target, everybody will attack you. NSA, 8400, Russian and Chinese teams, everybody. If you're just an individual working on their personal business, nobody is burning 0days on you.
Like battery, HDD/SDD, display, ethernet, wifi and bluetooth modules, keyboard, touchpad, webcam, SD card reader, BIOS/SMM, TPM, etc.
Some of those might be innocuous and unable to host anything malicious, some might seem so but have non-obvious ways to compromise the system. And some, like anything communication related... sky is the limit.
What's common with those is that they are very hard, nearing impossible to audit and analyze. When was the last time you checked whether your laptop's WiFi firmware isn't doing something nasty? Or your SSD FW?
I think we need to be worried about a lot more than just BIOS and OS.
I think the idea is to provide a feature for persistent spyware. For example if a company wanted to be able to track their laptops even if someone factory resets it.
I have yet to become allergic to Google snooping but understand that lack of trust to be very well founded. I think I understand their secure boot architecture, though. Whereas I simply cannot trust Windows Secure Boot based vendor firmware.
Apple iOS devices. Their macOS Intel computers are about as trustworthy as Chromebook Intel.
Not-so-recent ThinkPad laptops with OpenBoot BIOS are ok.
All of these devices have radios with each their own, black-box operating systems. I don't know how to develop a basis for trust there.
So I am left with very few alternatives.
A Raptor Talos II Workstation, with a custom battery-based power supply, locked inside a Faraday cage. Turned off.
With Chinese companies already having Google free software/service stacks in China, being able to get adoption of those stacks internationally may allow the full bifurcation of the Android ecosystem, essentially eviscerating Google’s monopoly.
Long term it could be a turning point to deflating American dominance of the most important market in the modern world.
The most important market in the modern world is oil and gas.
Global digital ad spending (which is what these software/service stacks are proxies for) will be $327B in 2019. Compare this to $360B for a single oil producer, Saudi Aramco, in 2018.
Note that none of the FAANGs are even in the top 10 of this list:
... and only 2 are in the top 20. And google is not on the list at all. 5 of those top 10 are oil and gas (and it would be 6 if Saudi Aramco were listed).
Even with a push in sustainability, plastics use is increasing not dropping:
In many ways the internet split is already done, there's hardly any overlap between the Chinese and US web. Probably because most of the non-chinese web is blocked in China.
Theoretically, this makes Chinese web companies less competitive. Many US companies are dominant worldwide, but the majority of popular Chinese tech companies are only popular in their captive market.
IMO it's similar to the captive markets of the Soviet Bloc. Strong protectionism and state sponsoring like China has done, and the Soviet Union did historically created companies that weren't globally competitive. The day the iron curtain fell, treasured trabants were abandoned on the side of the road.
Will history repeats itself? Who knows, but the situation is very similar. China produces a lot of good products, probably moreso than the USSR at it's peak. But China also engages in many practices that eventually made Soviet products inferior.
The U.S. has been fudging leadership for some time. Now it’s looking for someone to blame. It’s looking for a Plaza Accords 2.0. But China is not Japan, geopolitically.
I kind of wish they'd embrace something like Firefox OS.
No less than how much I trust the five eyes we have right now.
The only thing preventing me from using Chinese based stuff is the language barrier.
And Firefox OS, why would they embrace something nobody else has?
The free market in action...
The battery was different but had a similar problem - https://www.scmp.com/tech/enterprises/article/2026800/samsun...
The same could be said for the US in the case of Hauwei but China is far worse on this front.
Chinese TV & newspapers spend most of their time speaking about how good China and Chinese companies are rather than caring about US companies. Lots of Chinese people are not aware of the "trade war".
I'm not asking for many just 1 recent example.
There is propaganda everywhere but it is about China. They don't tend to bash other countries but keep going on about how good China is. They just ignore everyone else because China is everything.
The US media bashes China all the time but that may just be because I read English news. If you have seen the Chinese equivalent I would like to check it out since I haven't seen that side of China yet.
The Chinese people are strongly nationalistic just like people from the USA (I'm from Australia which is nice ... but not really important). Social media is big over here and people organise boycotts of companies all the time.
You said "state-controlled media puts out massive amounts of propaganda railing foreign firms" and "China is far worse". It should be easy to find one if this is true otherwise it is just "fake news" that gets repeated so often that people think it is true.
It should be easy to find one example.
Limiting searches to xinhuanet.com does yield massive amounts of propaganda, but mostly about how great foreign companies think China is. Maybe I'm just using the wrong search terms, though.
There was the issue about the airlines recently as well. I just skip over those stories but there are a lot of them.
You can see the user responded anyways when I refused to participate. Why didn't they just say that the first time?
Sorry if you thought it was a troll. It sounded like you knew an actual source that I could check out rather than just rumours.
Once your source is provided, those who don't read Chinese can get a little bit help from Google Translate as well, I found its quality to be really good.
Also, there's nothing stopping China - or anyone else - from doing as they please with Android 'stack', hint: it's not the valuable thing.
Chinese businesses just fundamentally don't understand what western cultures want, they can just build cheap gadgets. For the next let's call it 35 years it's simply not going to happen.
Beyond that, I think Huawei is the #3 mobile phone seller in Europe (behind Apple and Samsung) and #2 in Canada.
The DJIs and Yuneecs etc of the world have already set the standard here.
Huh. Did the US government just make my cell phone illegal to use? Replacement is on my list of things to do, but I wasn't really planning on it this month.....
Not to mention basically every other option I could look at is also made in China, with the exception(?) of Samsung - which I'm not inclined to cough up the $$ for.
A loose enough reading of that includes Chinese manufactured iPhones, it seems...
I guess the market has different ideas. I get the "it's a slick piece of tech" factor, but can some one who likes flagships talk about what makes them good?
For what it's worth, I consider the Samsung Galaxy S3 the pinnacle of smartphone design. It retailed for $250 at launch. I feel like prices are going up because the smartphone industry is trying to innovate faster than chips are improving.
I'd probably be on a Nokia right now if they'd released a 6.2 this spring. I haven't looked at the J7 specifically but my impression in the past has been that there are a variety of midrange phones that are a better value than Samsung's offerings.
On the other hand, I have an S8 now and it labors to render most websites. That's more an indictment of the websites, but such is the world we live in.
>The U.S.-China Cold War Will Get Worse Before It Gets Better. That’s because the major issue between the two nations is not trade or ideology but a lack of trust.
This is reflected in the way 5G is being rolled out in China. Mostly new sub-6GHz 5G NR modulation basestations are being put in. Millimeter band is not being attempted initially. This gets them 15-20% modulation gain in thoroughput over LTE in the same circumstances at most.
From a business perspective, pushing 5G as fast as it is pushed now by China, does not make sense. Chinese network operators would not want to deploy 5G quite as fast as they are being forced to, but China’s government is imposing it.
So why impose it? There might be several reasons, e.g. to have a dominant position in setting industry standards, but one reason stands out: The complex 5G standard requires frequent software that make it harder to enforce security software reviews and anti-espionage measures.
When I think of American companies that actually care about data privacy only a few come to mind. I do believe Apple makes a good faith effort toward protecting user data, despite the company's many anti-consumer practices. There are a number of smaller companies like Purism and Yubico that go further in making this a part of their core business strategy. But generally my experience has been that American companies give a backseat to these concerns. Remember when Equifax, an American company, leaked the personal data of 143 million U.S. citizens in 2017 ? What about the Citrix hack from just a few months ago where 6TB of sensitive information was stolen by Iranian hackers ? What makes these companies more trustworthy than Huawei or any other Chinese company?
Finally, there's a line you can draw from the decisions of the past to what's happening today. The U.S. is largely responsible for the design of the modern web for both good and bad. The Internet is an amazing thing that has uplifted people around the world, including in developing countries where opportunities are needed  . At the same time surveillance and proprietary software has become pedestrian to the point where most people (myself included) just accept it. We used Chinese manufacturing to scale this vision, from cheap Internet-connected devices to the servers that store and deliver our personal information. What kind of example did we set for China or other countries to follow? Where would we be had we followed the advice of people like Richard Stallman who warned us decades in advance?
We seem to be moving toward a more isolated world as of late. I hope we can get to a point where we're having productive conversations on a global scale about how tech could make our lives better (and potentially worse). The alternative is to let the chips fall where they may. In a world of IoT, AI and autonomous weapons, that's not a game I'd like to play.
I am cautious of any government tampering in devices, but as it stands such tampering has not been found in huawei devices, but HAS been found in devices coming from US manufacturers... Yet no one is asking a ban on those?
Arguments based on market access when it comes to China and Chinese companies seems like a farce, before or after the trade war.
It's not a coincidence that many Chinese devices have "bugs" that have them phone home.
Do you think China would allow their telecom companies to build out using Cisco gear?
That's the game China is playing.
Now that you mention it, though, there's no need to say "China's Huawei" in the title above. I've shortened it.
But regarding the Whatsapp exploit, the association with Israel is arguably less relevant. The company is closely tied to Israel, but the US has a far less adversarial relationship with Israel than with China.
Edit: I was just stating the obvious, I guess. Doesn't mean that I agree with it, however. Just sayin'.
And yes, Israel is the primary US proxy in the Middle East. And is widely supported in the US. So of course they get lots of slack. There's little doubt that the NSA has some role in this, or is at least OK with it.
Frankly, it looks like the opposite. The US are the primary Israel's proxy in the West. Israel is causing the US much more trouble than gain in the Middle East.
I don't pretend to know what US goals really are in the Middle East. Maybe nobody does. So assessing trouble vs gain is iffy at best.
Also, the expert interviewed in the article says that "the gathering of all the Jews in exile to the Holy Land is a prerequisite for these events unfolding" (the end of times, etc.). But then, absurdity for absurdity, why don't the evangelicals call for the Jews to be expelled from the US, which would advance the evangelical cause even more? And more, to a Christian fundamentalist, a non-converted Jew is basically an infidel, so you'd expect them to be regarded with suspicion and contempt- which doesn't seem to happen. The Evangelicals then seem to entertain their beliefs only insofar that is beneficial to Israel. Isn't that strange?
It does happen. The US right simultaneously loves Israel and isn't particularly fond of Jews.
If a Canadian or British company did the WhatsApp thing they'd get similar treatment. It's no that Israel is individually "special", it's that they're in the large group of ally countries to the US.
Has that actually been proven?
US companies have ties to the US government, as do Chinese companies with China.
This is at least partially why China blocked facebook (foreign influenced social media), have access to Windows source code, etc.
Couldn't this be a consequence, rather than the cause, of the willingness to remove or mute anything that can put Israel in a less than positive light?
I used to be angry about Israel, but no longer see the point of it. Being critical of Israel is political suicide in the US. That's just how it is. See The Israel Lobby and U.S. Foreign Policy by John Mearsheimer and Stephen Walt (2007).
But be careful about discussing it.
I know. But it is how it is because of a pervasive propaganda on one side, and the fear of speaking up on the other. It can be changed.
I can't imagine what it would take to change it.
I wonder why they would be; there's nothing left-wing about China. They have sky-rocketing inequality and a poor working class working excessive hours under harsh conditions. China is highly capitalist, but under a totalitarian government. Nothing to admire about from a left-wing point of view.
The new wave of socialism in the US cherry picks instances of the ideology that is somewhat palatable with the West's notion of individual freedom. Denmark and Norway are sold as socialist meccas, but equally socialist China, Russia and Venezuela are conveniently ignored. The truth is that communism is a superset of socialism, and socialism in general tends to put the collective above the individual, often time at the cost of civil liberties.
I wasn't aware that Marx, Stalin, Lenin, Mao and Pol Pot were seen as heroes in the US. I thought they're generally seen as villains. They certainly are in Europe. During the Cold War, there has been some sympathy in western socialist circles for Stalin and Mao, but primarily because people didn't realise, or didn't want to know, how terrible they were.
Different branches of socialism have grown far apart over the past century. Were Marxism, social democracy and anarchism used fairly interchangeably a century ago, they have grown into almost complete opposites in some cases. Marx certainly wouldn't agree with modern China in any way: there's no power at all for workers, state and corporations hold all the power, which is exactly the situation that both Marxists and other kinds of socialists argued against.
They are generally seen as villains which is why those on the political right try to associate socialism with them and then try to label anything to the left of their politics as socialism even though it almost never is.
Politics in general is a dirty game. We don't need to oversimplify the landscape into some sort of spurious left/right divide in order to make a credible claim that there is a problematic prevailing narrative.
While compromised hardware from _ANY_ player worries me, I worry more about American hardware than I worry about Chinese hardware at this point in time...