BT avoids Huawei for 5G after stripping tech from EE mobile network

BT to remove Huawei hardware from 4G network amid fears of Chinese spying

BT will remove Huawei 4G equipment and excludes company from 5G bids

The decision comes as governments increase their scrutiny of Huawei equipment ahead of rolling out 5G, the next generation mobile communication technology that promise faster download speeds and better connections.

It added that Huawei would still be part of its secondary "5G Radio Access Network".

BT will pull Huawei equipment out of its core 4G network within two years to fit its own internal policy.

The last time HEXUS reported on concerns about Chinese owned Huawei and ZTE was back in 2012, when the U.S. government and USA companies were urged to stop participating in projects with these companies due as the "pose a significant threat to national security".

Equipment from the Chinese firm was brought into BT when it bought EE back in 2016, according to the FT.

Wall Street Journal in November reported that the US government will be asking wireless and internet providers in friendly countries to avoid telecommunications equipment from Huawei. Huawei's "enhanced packet core" technology is still at the core of EE's 4G network today.

Huawei-built phone masts and peripheral things like that can stay, but BT has a long-standing commitment in place to not use equipment from the supplier at the very core of its network, due to the unspecified potential security risks of handing an overseas company the keys to your whole network. Additionally, Huawei was excluded by BT from bidding on future contracts regarding 5G network infrastructure, hardware, and equipment. As a result, Huawei have not been included in vendor selection for.

Huawei told The Reg it had "been working with BT for nearly 15 years".

The British company also confirmed it is removing Huawei's hardware from use in its existing 3G and 4G networks, first revealed by theFinancial Times this morning.

The US, Australia and New Zealand have all moved to bar Huawei's equipment from 5G networks, and the head of the UK's secret service, Alex Younger, warned this week that the United Kingdom must decide whether to do the same.

But British and US intelligence agencies have alleged that Huawei is linked to China's government, and that its equipment could contain "backdoors" which could be used to snoop on or disrupt communications. BT reports offering various services in around 180 countries.

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