90 Miles From Tyranny : Chinese smartphone maker Huawei planned to circumvent Trump admin ban and sell in U.S. covertly

Tuesday, August 13, 2019

Chinese smartphone maker Huawei planned to circumvent Trump admin ban and sell in U.S. covertly

Despite being banned by the Trump administration from selling its products in the United States, China-based Huawei, the world’s second-largest smartphone maker, planned to circumvent the ban anyway by using a Mexican conduit.

Bill Gertz at the Washington Free Beacon reports that the plan is to disguise the phones as non-Huawei devices, but it was discovered last month by U.S. intelligence agencies who have since alerted the Trump administration to the plan:
According to the officials, the Shenzhen, China-based company planned to ship a large number of its smartphones to Mexico where the smartphones would be re-labeled and shipped into the United States.

As non-Huawei devices, there would be no prohibition on selling them in the United States.

The phones, however, could be identified as Huawei devices by examining their electronic components that can be traced to the Chinese telecom.

No other details of the plan are known, but it’s clear that the Chinese are working to subvert the Trump administration’s ban on selling Huawei phones in the U.S. by any means possible, which indicates that concerns about Beijing using the company’s products as espionage tools is legitimate.

The national security concerns regarding Huawei aren’t new, by the way. As Gertz noted, in 2008 the company was forced to abandon efforts to buy the U.S. telecom company 3Com for that reason. And two years later, Huawei was pressured into abandoning...

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