Huawei is under no obligation to spy on its customers on behalf of China's communist leadership, a top company official said in a recent interview meant to present the tech giant's side of the story in regards to the plethora of issues it is currently experiencing in the West.
Huawei Chairman Liang Hua spoke with Canadian outlet The Globe and Mail as part of the firm's latest attempt at doing damage control. The Shenzen-based manufacturer has often been accused of installing backdoors into its software in order to facilitate its compliance with future data requests from Chinese authorities, though none of those claims were ever substantiated, as Mr. Liang is still quick to point out.
The 54-year-old still failed to directly address the root cause of that kind of distrust - the fact that China's strict laws and decades of undemocratic policies created an environment wherein the government can more or less compel any entity to do its bidding without any significant issues.
The Western intelligence community has long argued that even if Huawei never compromised its foreign customers in order to assist Beijing — which many security chiefs believe to be essentially impossible by now — the firm still cannot be trusted because of the aforementioned regulatory framework which turns the Chinese government's data requests into a formality that cannot be ignored by any entity, regardless of its size.
That's all assuming Huawei would be unwilling to assist Beijing at the expense of any one of its customers in the first place given how it never gave the general public many reasons to believe otherwise.
"Huawei will never do anything to harm any country, any organization or any individual," Mr. Liang said during his Sunday interview, arguing that the technology segment is something that benefits the humanity as a whole and shouldn't be attached to any ideology or philosophy for the sake of everyone.
Naturally, it's not like Huawei is running a charity, the firm's 5G plans could skyrocket its already exploding revenues which are still consistently setting records despite the mounting regulatory opposition the company's portfolio is now facing from the West.
At the same time, it's precisely 5G that got the United States concerned about Huawei's rising global influence; the next generation of wireless networks is bound to forever change the world's economy by enabling a broad range of new technologies such as driverless vehicles, VR streaming, remote surgery, and cutting-edge smart cities. By extent, 5G will create countless new jobs worldwide and further deepen the humanity's reliance on Internet connectivity.
Accepting Huawei-made 5G equipment would essentially turn over the keys to any given country's critical infrastructure over to China, exposing it to spying and attacks, many Western security officials argued in the past. Huawei was always firm in its stance that those allegations are frivolous but its opaque corporate structure, strong ties to Beijing, and an absolutely bizarre history of legal issues with foreign countries, firms, and even individuals make many regulators not too eager to entertain its arguments.