Engadget reports that the Department of Homeland Security is advising U.S. companies to cease business with Chinese companies. The D.H.S business advisory published yesterday says that US companies should avoid “data services and equipment” from Chinese companies. The report is 15 pages. Businesses are exposing “themselves and their customers to heightened risks” according to the report.
This includes sharing data flows to servers as well as using devices created by companies. Companies having “an ownership nexus in the PRC (People’s Republic of China)” pose the most threat. The report repeats the same two major objections US officials raised about Chinese tech companies.
Firstly, is that China’s new legal regime can order companies to divulge confidential information. Secondly, Chinese companies can benefit from the government’s financial and technical support. As a result, these companies cannot be seen as neutral.
One of the biggest concerns is Chinese officials ordering the inclusion of backdoors or exploits to make surveillance easier. The report adds that “stolen intellectual property” has been “essential”.
D.H.S business advisory explains the risks of dealing with Chineses companies
This essential knowledge bolsters the capabilities of the People’s Liberation Army. Consequently, along with stolen knowledge, China’s growing technological footprint allows for the monitoring of opposing figures and dissidents.
For example, Huawei built a data center funded by China in Papua New Guinea the report states. Once it was finished, Data Center Dynamics described it as being built with “glaring errors that opened the facility up to spying.”
This being the case lives up to what the DHS business advisory says. Originally released December 22 the DHS says the PRC has both the intent and ability to covertly access data.
This access comes from entities under the influence or jurisdiction of PRC laws. This happens without the knowledge or consent of non-PRC businesses or institutions that maintain rights to the data.
Acting Secretary of Homeland Security Chad F. Wolf's said “for too long, U.S. networks and data have been exposed to cyber threats based in China.” These threats are using the data to give an unfair competitive advantage to Chinese firms in the global marketplace. These unfair practices put the U.S. economy and businesses at direct risk for exploitation.
This advisory comes shortly after the FCC officially banned Huawei and ZTE equipment. It also comes after the approval of funds to remove Huawei and ZTE equipment from U.S. carriers’ networks. The U.S. government continues its crusade to completely remove any signs of Chinese technology from the country. With this, it seems to be one step closer to its goal.