Huawei fights back security concerns to assure Korean customers

By Song Su-hyun

Published : Oct 8, 2018 - 15:53
Updated : Oct 8, 2018 - 15:53

Amid persistent concerns in the industry about potential security risks of deploying Huawei’s fifth-generation network equipment by Korean telecom companies, the Chinese tech giant said Monday it will respond to any requests by the Korean government or customers to prove its security capabilities.

“Huawei has been working to meet requirements on security by governments around the world, and the company will obviously fulfill requirements by the Korean government, if it demands any,” the company said in a statement.

The statement was made as bidding for 5G equipment deployments by three Korean mobile operators comes to an end soon.

While market leader SK Telecom announced last month it will be working with Samsung Electronics, Ericsson and Nokia for the establishment of its 5G network, KT and LG Uplus have not yet finalized their decisions.

KT is expected to follow the decision of SKT, but that decision is being delayed for numerous reasons, according to the equipment industry.

“KT is facing challenges in making a final decision on the vendors because it has to achieve two contrasting goals of savings costs and speedily deploying the nationwide network,” said an industry insider.

Some said, “It is unusual for KT to postpone the deals with equipment venders for several weeks, which raises questions if the company is considering Huawei at the last minute.” 

(Huawei)



LG Uplus, which introduced Huawei’s Long Term Evolution equipment in 2013, is reportedly leaning toward the Chinese 5G equipment, and is discussing the scope of deployment.

“LG Uplus is considering deploying the Huawei equipment for Sejong and Gwacheon areas, but is facing some disagreements from the government,” said an industry source.

Both KT and LG Uplus officials denied the comments, and did not confirm when the final decision will be made.

Huawei emphasized its customer LG Uplus has not experienced a security mishap with the company’s LTE equipment since adoption in 2013. 

“It was confirmed based on the certification of Common Criteria at the time that no backdoor existed in the Huawei equipment deployed for LG, while the Korean government-led inspections found no problem,” the Chinese company said. 

By Song Su-hyun (song@heraldcorp.com)

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The Korea Herald by Herald Corporation