Britain’s parliamentary defence committee said on Friday that it will investigate the security of the country’s 5G networks, due to continued concerns around the role of Chinese company Huawei having been granted a limited role.
Despite the US excluding Huawei from its 5G infrastructure completely, due to accusations that the company is a national security threat and a spy for Beijing, in January, UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson decided to grant Huawei a limited role in Britain’s 5G roll-out.
Pressure from US
The US’s global campaign to exclude the firm from 5G networks in the West has seen the US government start developing an alternative to Huawei 5G and putting pressure on the UK to reconsider. And last week, via an unusual letter, twenty Republican and Democratic US senators urged members of the House of Commons to reconsider the UK government’s decision to allow China’s Huawei to be a supplier for the country’s 5G mobile network.
Defence Select Ctte Inquiry:SECURITY OF 5GIf you would like to submit evidence for consideration please click here:https://t.co/vELqxGtFQf pic.twitter.com/JTF6eGHcyJMarch 6, 2020
Given the US pressure, and an impending trade deal with the US, which Britain hopes will be one of the biggest bonuses when departing the European Union, it doesn’t come as a complete shock that the 5G security will now be subject to an inquiry by a sub-committee of the parliamentary defence committee.
5G security evidence
UK Parliament is now inviting written evidence submissions on the 'Security of 5G'. The points listed for evidence include: “To what degree is it possible to exclude Huawei technology from the most sensitive parts of the UK’s 5G network while allowing it to supply peripheral components?” and “To what extent was the UK Government’s decision on Huawei driven by political rather than technical factors?”
The deadline for the evidence submission is 5pm on Friday 3 April 2020, so we can expect the parliamentary defence committee to reconsider Huawei’s role in Britain’s 5G network relatively quickly.