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Global communication shall not be subject to US 'digital hegemony'

By Shi Wangsheng (People's Daily)    10:39, June 14, 2019

Chinese communication equipment recently came under fire of the US who slandered that Chinese tech firms had implanted backdoors into their products in an attempt to help the Chinese government spy on the world.

Chinese tech giant Huawei, supplier of video surveillance products Hikvision, as well as drone maker DJI were all attacked by Washington. They were accused of posing the so-called “security risk”.

However, no concrete evidence has been provided so far to support US allegation.

As a matter of fact, the US is haunted by its suspicious mind, as it was the Uncle Sam itself that has long been spying on global communication by its superiority in information and communication technology

The US practice can be well explained by a Chinese proverb – to measure the heart of the great with a heart of the mean. From this perspective, it makes sense for Washington to doubt that another country is monitoring the world like it does in an attempt to challenge its hegemony.

According to western media, the US is spying on 90 percent of global communication, which is also indicated in the documents of the top-confidential PRISM program revealed by Edward Snowden.

It’s reported that US intelligence department has already acquired monitoring technology that can be applied to products of each communication company in the first few years of the 21st century.

Glenn Greenwald, a journalist from Guardian,disclosed that the National Security Agency (NSA) routinely receives – or intercepts – routers, servers and other computer network devices being exported from the US before they are delivered to the international customers.

The agency then implants backdoor surveillance tools, repackages the devices with a factory seal and sends them on, he added.

A report by Reuters in 2013 pointed out that the NSA arranged a $10 million contract with RSA, a computer and network security company in the US, to put backdoors to the company’s encryption in mobile terminals.

The RSA is a basic firm in the information security industry, and its scandal placed a huge impact on the sector and even shocked the world.

For years, the US has been lobbying organizations in the west to resist Chinese communication equipment, fanning that Huawei and other Chinese firms have a security threat with hidden backdoors, said Greenwald.

However, the US government has done what it accuses the Chinese of doing: implanting back-door surveillance tools in devices exported from the US, he added.

After the PRISM program was exposed, the US didn’t slacken its efforts to monitor the world.

In 2015, the US Congress passed legislation to end the surveillance within the US. Three years later, US President Donald Trump signed a bill, extending the controversial Section 702 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) for another six years. This allows the US intelligence to continue its warrantless surveillance program on foreigners’ emails and text messages.

Last year, Trump officially signed into law the Clarifying Lawful Overseas Use of Data Act or CLOUD Act, which further lowered the barriers for law enforcement’s access to the data held by technology companies worldwide and stored on servers in any country.

Targeting Chinese firms on trumped-up charges, the US was just afraid of yielding control of telecoms infrastructure, security experts told the US media outlet Business Insider, regarding the reason why the US keeps agitating security risks of Chinese telecoms equipment.

Regrettably, the US “digital hegemony” is not followed by other countries.

France will preserve its national security but not block any telecom provider to build 5G network infrastructure, French President Emmanuel Macron said on May 16. At the same time, German Chancellor Angela Merkel reiterated the stand of her country, saying that any company can participate in the 5G construction in Germany as long as it conforms to the standard of security.

In addition to France and Germany, some other US allies stated clearly their position of not banning Huawei from their 5G networks, which gave a heavy blow to the US. 

(For the latest China news, Please follow People's Daily on Twitter and Facebook)(Web editor: Xian Jiangnan, Bianji)

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