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FCC has officially declared that Huawei and ZTE are national security threats

Huawei is a major competitor in the 5G race.

huawei signage
Image: CircleID

Huawei and ZTE are back in the news this week, with the Federal Communication Commission now officially declaring both Chinese companies “national security threats.”

Announced this week, this official classification comes after an FCC vote back in November. Now, it’s official. The infamous Ajit Pai notes that “Both companies have close ties to the Chinese Communist Party and China’s military apparatus, and both companies are broadly subject to Chinese law obligating them to cooperate with the country’s intelligence services.”

So, what does this new designation mean for the two companies? The main thing here is that companies will be unable to use money from the Universal Service Fund, an $8.3 billion subsidy program that companies can use to purchase and maintain telecom equipment from Huawei and ZTE. Pai notes that money from this fund comes from fees people and businesses pay on their telecom bills.

Huawei is a major competitor in the 5G race. Critics of the company have long said that Huawei could use its knowledge and equipment to assist China in spying purposes. Huawei has previously stated that it would not allow the Chinese Communist Party to access any customer data.

Other countries have halted Huawei’s 5G efforts, including Japan and Australia, while India is still weighing options. The UK, which had previously said it would work with Huawei on 5G tech is now starting to pivot, as well.

What do you think? Do you agree with the FCC’s decision regarding Huawei and ZTE? Let us know down below in the comments or carry the discussion over to our Twitter or Facebook.

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Former KnowTechie editor.

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