Friday April 3, 2020
Home Lead Story US Warns Spai...

US Warns Spain About Risk of Opening Networks to Chinese Tech Firms

US Pressures Spain on Chinese Tech Firms

0
//
Spain tech
The U.S. government warned Spain about the security risk inherent in opening its fifth-generation communications networks to Chinese tech firms. Wikimedia Commons

The U.S. government warned Spain this week about the security risk inherent in opening its fifth-generation communications networks to Chinese mobile technology providers.

In meetings Thursday and Friday, U.S. officials warned Spanish officials and telecommunications executives that the U.S. could stop sharing sensitive information with Spain if the Chinese firms reportedly involved in 5G technology were not excluded from local markets.

Robert Strayer, U.S. deputy assistant secretary for cyber and international communications and information policy, told reporters at the U.S. Embassy in Madrid that 5G pioneer Huawei was under the control of the Chinese government.

Spain tech
U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo walks on the tarmac as he leaves Germany after taking part in the 56th Munich Security Conference (MSC) in Munich, southern Germany. VOA

Defense implications  

“We cannot put our important information at the risk of being accessed by the Chinese Communist Party,” Strayer said, stressing that technology developed by Huawei to accelerate connections between billions of objects has inevitable defense implications.

Huawei offers better 5G network equipment at lower prices than its competitors, according to telecommunications analysts. U.S. efforts to restrict the company’s access to major international markets have been rebuffed by allies in Europe and Asia.

The U.K. announced in late January that it would allow Huawei to equip parts of its 5G networks. Similar decisions have been made by Germany and other EU governments.

At an international security conference in Munich last week, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo called for the creation of a Western alliance against China aimed at blocking cyberespionage.

“In recent years, we have witnessed an intense communications campaign to raise consciousness over the interference of the People’s Republic of China in companies that manufacture telecommunications equipment,” said Javier Cremades, a Spanish lawyer specializing in cybersecurity.

‘Criminalizing’ competition

Cremades said Chinese laws allow official access to all information handled by technology firms. That provision, however, does not extend to European affiliates or commercial activity outside China, he said, adding that U.S. accusations against China might be aimed at “criminalizing” the competition in the rivalry with Beijing to control the world’s phone technology market.

Spokesmen from the U.K.’s National Cyber Security Center said it was “feasible” to implement security measures to separate “high-risk vendors” from sensitive data and functions, although it could require design restrictions that may slow 5G network performance.

U.S. officials said other European and Asian firms that have been cleared to operate in American markets, including Sweden’s Ericsson and South Korea’s Samsung, offer 5G technology as advanced as China’s.

Spain tech
A woman and her dog walk past a Huawei shop in Madrid, Spain. VOA

Spain’s biggest telecommunications companies, including Telefonica and Vodafone, say they have taken steps to reduce Chinese input for their core systems of future data management in mobile telephones, according to the newspaper El Mundo.

But U.S. appeals to European countries to restrict access to Chinese tech giants come at a sensitive moment in transatlantic commercial relations.

Serious disagreement over European Union efforts to impose a new tax on American high-tech providers has already shaken the telecommunications sector.

U.S. diplomats have threatened to retaliate against Spain and other countries for imposing taxes that target American firms that operate a majority of Europe’s digital networks.

Also Read- US States Start Supporting Planned Parenthood Clinics

U.S. President Donald Trump “cannot become a boss who tells European countries what they can do in the EU,” said Spain’s Treasury Minister Maria Jesus Montero, who defends the tax as a way of protecting local competitors.

Spain has a had a close commercial and military relationship with the U.S. since the middle of the last century. But the influence of China has grown recently, with nearly 50% of Spain’s national debt now owned by Chinese banks.  (VOA)

Next Story

HP Unveils Variety of Relief Initiatives For Partners, Customers

Partners can opt in for customized online digital learning paths designed to meet their specific priorities

0
HP
In addition, the company has shifted its customer engagement model to an online platform across a broad set of topics including office printing, security, mobility solutions and HP services. Pixabay

PC and printer major HP Inc. on Thursday announced a variety of relief initiatives aimed at arming its global channel partner community to effectively navigate the operational and financial challenges associated with COVID-19.

Customers can also take advantage of a delayed payment structure or enroll in a PC rental programme, available on equipment contracts for a period of 12 months, said the company. After 12 months, rental devices can be extended, purchased or returned for an upgrade, it added.

In addition to providing a variety of financing and leasing options for end customers, the company will offer short-term, market and country-specific incentives for channel partners, the company said, adding that the offers will vary by geography and are dependent on partner eligibility.

In addition, HP has implemented a more predictable, flat-rate incentive programme and relaxed compensation models to allow for more partner flexibility with linearity while extending deadlines for submission of proof of performance and reporting.

“We’re structured to ensure the continuity of our business operations even under the most challenging circumstances and we feel very fortunate to be in a position to offer the help and support needed by our valued partners and customers,” Christoph Schell, Chief Commercial Officer, HP Inc., said in a statement.

Please Follow NewsGram on Twitter To Get Latest Updates from Around The World!

In partnership with its endorsed finance partners, HP is now offering a variety of financial and asset lifecycle options, including deferred/reduced payments until 2021, short term rentals and cash infusion for customer-owned HP devices through a sale leaseback programme.

Qualified customers can convert existing, owned workplace assets into a payment solution or acquire technology needed today with reduced payments for the remainder of 2020 to alleviate temporary cash flow challenges.

The company earlier announced advanced security solutions to provide complete threat protection for businesses and their remote workforces. In addition to offering tips and advice online, HP is also offering free customer webinars to help set up home offices securely.

HP
PC and printer major HP Inc. on Thursday announced a variety of relief initiatives aimed at arming its global channel partner community to effectively navigate the operational and financial challenges associated with COVID-19. Pixabay

To help arm partners with the skills and knowledge required to optimise revenue and future-proof their business, HP University offers online, on-demand learning options across a variety of topics including sales skills education, product training and industry-leading certifications.

Partners can opt in for customized online digital learning paths designed to meet their specific priorities. HP shifted all events throughout fiscal 2020 (ending October 31, 2020) to virtual engagement models. In addition, the company has shifted its customer engagement model to an online platform across a broad set of topics including office printing, security, mobility solutions and HP services.

ALSO READ: “Staying Fit, Eating Well is important During Lockdown”, Says Actor Sanjay Dutt

To address heightened demand for customer support, HP said it has cross-trained agents to manage multiple queues, established access to work-from-home technology for agents, and leveraging chat, social and web support options. (IANS)