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UK government to conduct review of Huawei cyber-security practices

The UK government is set to review Huawei's cyber-security practices, after concerns were raised by a recent Intelligence and Security Committee (ISC) report.

The ISC believes that the Chinese firm could pose a significant threat to the UK's telecommunications industry, if activities continue unchecked.

The fears stem from the fact that the Oxford-based Cyber Security Evaluation Centre (the Cell) – which is tasked with ensuring Huawei does not pose any security risk to the UK – is run by Huawei itself.

"A self-policing arrangement is highly unlikely either to provide, or to be seen to be providing, the required levels of security assurance," said the IDC report. "While we recognise that there are some benefits associated with the current staffing arrangements for the Cell, these do not, in our opinion, outweigh the risks of Huawei effectively policing themselves."

A Huawei spokeswoman responded to the news by saying that the Chinese company fully supports the decision to conduct a review.

A Cabinet Office spokesman said, "We have robust procedures in place to ensure confidence in the security of UK telecommunications networks.

"However, we are not complacent and as such we have agreed to the main recommendation of the report to conduct a review of Huawei's Cyber Security Evaluation Centre (the 'Banbury Cell') to give assurance that we have the right measures and processes in place to protect UK telecommunications."

Security issues surrounding Huawei have been a hot topic over the past year, with the US opting to shut all of the company's products from its market in October, following a very high-profile dispute.

A short time later, our own government gave Huawei the green light to carry on operating in Britain, which it has done with success, becoming a major telecommunications force.