Chinese electronics company Huawei has responded to claims by both US and UK governments that it is involved in state-sponsored hacking by describing the allegations as ‘racist corporate defamation.’
It has been suggested that Huawei may be directly supplying information to the Chinese authorities, based on knowledge gleaned about communications networks when supplying networking equipment, with some suggesting that the equipment itself may contain backdoors designed to allow access by the Chinese government. The House Intelligence Committee went as far as advising US companies to stop doing business with Huawei …
Huawei notes that no evidence has so far been put forward to support the claims, and used unusually forthright language to do so. In a statement to The Verge, Huawei’s VP of external affairs William Plummer said:
This is tired nonsense we’ve been hearing for years, trotted out anew as a flimsy bright and shiny object to distract attention from the very real compromising of global networks and information that has been exposed in recent weeks. Misdirecting and slandering Huawei may feel okay because the company is Chinese-based – no harm, no foul, right? Wrong. Huawei is a world-proven multinational across 150 global markets that supports scores and scores of American livelihoods, and thousands more, indirectly, through $6 billion a year in procurements from American suppliers. Someone says they got some proof of some sort of threat? Okay. Then put up. Or shut up. Lacking proof in terms of the former, which seems clearly the case, this is politically-inspired and racist corporate defamation, nothing more.
Not quite the language we have come to expect from corporate statements.
In the smartphone sector, Huawei has so far mostly been associated with low-end devices, but recently unveiled a high-end Android handset in the form of the Ascend P6 after a teaser campaign majoring on the slimness of the phone. Huawei suggested at the P6 launch that it may be interested in acquiring Nokia. William Plummer, quoted above, was a VP for Nokia back in 2008-9.