Huawei’s Networking Equipment Had Backdoors Reveals Report
Huawei is currently the world’s largest networking equipment manufacturer and the world’s second largest smartphone maker which is an honourable feat. However, it has had a few rough years accrediting to accusations associated with security. The company is blamed for installing back doors on its networking equipment which can allegedly expose sensitive user data to the Chinese government. Notably, the US government had suggested its allies to boycott using equipment manufactured by the company. Even though allegations against the company were not proved, they have definitely scarred Huawei’s reputation. In the latest development to the case, Bloomberg has published a report that states that the company indeed have backdoors in its equipment which date back from 2009 and 2011.
According to the report, the telecom provider, Vodafone had found vulnerabilities in the equipment supplied by Huawei for the carrier’s Italian business. The vulnerabilities also referred to as hidden backdoors allowed unauthorised access to Huawei which could have been used to lurk into telecom providers fixed line network in the country. Vodafone reportedly asked the Chinese networking equipment provider to remove the backdoors from home internet routers in the year 2011 which the latter assured to have been removed. But, further testing performed by the telecom operator revealed that the back doors remained.
Furthermore, Vodafone also discovered backdoors in parts of the fixed access network which is known as optical service nodes. Prominently, the service nodes are responsible for transporting data over optical fibre cables and also dealt with authentication of subscribers. Bloomberg would not reveal the names of the report providers as they were guaranteed of full anonymity on the matter.
Implications And Reasons For Installing Backdoors
As previously discussed, backdoors can imply serious security concerns for an organisation and its subscribers. Especially, if ill-intended hackers get hold of such backdoors, a significant amount of damage can be done both in terms of money and confidential user data.
However, it must be noted that companies purposely tend to integrate backdoors in their equipment. These can be used for collecting data from the hardware which would help the company to eliminate bugs on the current hardware and further strengthen the security for future devices.
Even though Vodafone states the issues were resolved by the accused and has also vouched for the security on network equipment manufactured by Huawei. The fact will further damage the company’s reputation on a Global level. All in all, it is yet unclear what the future holds for the Chinese conglomerate.