British telco to strip China's Huawei from core networks, limit 5G access

  • British telco to strip China's Huawei from core networks, limit 5G access

British telco to strip China's Huawei from core networks, limit 5G access

Huawei will still be enabled on its 5G Radio Access Network. Later, New Zealand rejected Huawei's first 5G bid citing national security risk.

This time, it's BT that's triaging the Chinese telecoms company from its 4G network infrastructure within the next two years.

In a statement, the United Kingdom telecoms company confirmed it is in the process of removing Huawei equipment from the key parts of its 3G and 4G networks to meet an existing internal policy not to have the Chinese firm at the centre of its infrastructure.

Additionally, Huawei was excluded by BT from bidding on future contracts regarding 5G network infrastructure, hardware, and equipment.

In their own statement, the company said: "Huawei has been working with BT for nearly 15 years". Huawei's "enhanced packet core" technology is still at the core of EE's 4G network today.

Britain's MI6 head Alex Younger publicly questioned on Monday whether Huawei should be involved in the 5G platform. "I've been to Shenzhen recently and there's nowhere else in the world where you can see the kind of 5G technology developments that Huawei has achieved".

A BT spokesperson confirmed to INQ: "In 2016, following the acquisition of EE, we began a process to remove Huawei equipment from the core of our 3G and 4G networks, as part of network architecture principles in place since 2006". Huawei has said that the concerns were unwarranted.

As part of an "extraordinary outreach campaign", USA officials have reportedly reached out to their government counterparts and telecom executives in European and Asian countries where Huawei equipment is already in use, warning them about the "national security risks" posed by the Chinese firm.

The telco is claiming that it made the decision to remove Huawei in order to bring EE in line with its legacy fixed network, which does not use Huawei technology. "This is a normal and expected activity, which we understand and fully support".

In 2010, the British government, Huawei and telecom operators, including BT, established the Huawei Cyber Security Evaluation Centre (HCSEC) Oversight Board, based in Banbury.

Huawei's banned, but where's the backlash in New Zealand? "Huawei has a robust cybersecurity assurance system and a proven track record", it said in the statement.