Google ends business with Huawei, is Huawei really spying?

Trump administration passed an executive order last week stating, “National emergency over IT threat”. US suspects that the Chinese government is spying on the US government with the help of Chinese telecommunication giants. As a response to this, Google has announced that it is ending business with Huawei. Google said it was “complying with the order and reviewing the implications”.

The Silicon Valley giant has suspended Huawei’s Android license on Sunday, May 19. Huawei phones will no longer get android updates but existing users will be able to update apps, run security fixes and access the play store.

Huawei said it would continue to provide security updates and after-sales services to all existing Huawei and Honor Smartphone and tablet products, covering those that have been sold or are still in stock globally.”We will continue to build a safe and sustainable software ecosystem, in order to provide the best experience for all users globally,” it added.

Huawei can still use the Android OS that is available through an open license.

Is Huawei really a threat to national security?

Controversy and Huawei have gone hand in hand down the years. US has had issues with Chinese telecom firms for quite a long time. In 2012, the US government banned Huawei from selling telecom equipment in the USA market for fear of national threat. US government believes that equipment made by Huawei could be used by the Chinese state to spy.

In 2014, Huawei and ZTE were banned from bidding for US government contracts.

In 2018, when Huawei decided to partner with AT&T to launch their flagship devices in the national market. The US government came into the picture and made AT&T break its deal with Huawei.

The dust hasn’t settled still and now the US has placed Huawei on a blacklist of companies, which leaves Huawei from using technology from US firms without government approval.

Huawei repeatedly denied all these allegations of a security breach. Huawei being the 2nd biggest makers of smartphones is all set to roll out 5G services. Again there are doubts on that too that Huawei 5G could lift China’s spying abilities. Hence the US restricted Huawei’s 5G trial.

What could Huawei possibly do to spy? Huawei could use software or hardware backdoors, install them in their phones and help Chinese government access these backdoor to steal information of the user. There is no evidence that Huawei is installing backdoors or using malicious code to steal information.

What if all these allegations are true? Then the Trump administration has sufficient reason to be afraid. However, one of the largest services and telecom equipment providers in the world is locked out of a huge and important market and is facing a backlash in its consumer business. Whatever it is Trump has again shocked everyone, especially the technology giants this time. Perhaps, the USA is doing this to support “Make America great again”.

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