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MI6 head warns on Huawei UK 5G

(Image credit: Image Credit: J.Lekavicius / Shutterstock)

The head of MI6 has warned the UK over the role of Chinese firms in building the country's 5G infrastructure.

In a rare speech, the UK Secret Intelligence Service boss said the UK should think long and hard before working with Huawei, or any other Chinese company, following past concerns.

Alex Younger said Britain needs to think if it's comfortable "with Chinese ownership of these technologies".

Huawei is under increasing pressure from the West, which claims the company is either working, or being forced to work with the Chinese government to use its technology for spying. Some Western countries believe letting Huawei or ZTE build 5G infrastructure would undermine national security.

Australia has already banned Huawei from supplying 5G equipment, as well as India, while New Zealand says it will consider all options. Representatives of both Democrats and Republicans in the US have warned against working with Huawei, while German officials have done a similar thing.

The US has also urged Italy and Japan to reconsider employing Huawei. One of the reasons why Huawei is being targeted by the West is the fact that the company was founded by former military engineer Ren Zhengfei.

Huawei denies all accusations.

Younger also said British intelligence needs to innovate faster than its adversaries to cope with threats the country faces.

Image Credit: J.Lekavicius / Shutterstock

Sead Fadilpašić
Sead Fadilpašić

Sead Fadilpašić is a freelance tech writer and journalist with more than 17 years experience writing technology-focussed news, blogs, whitepapers, reviews, and ebooks. And his work has featured in online media outlets from all over the world, including Al Jazeera Balkans (where he was a Multimedia Journalist), Crypto News, TechRadar Pro, and IT Pro Portal, where he has written news and features for over five years. Sead's experience also includes writing for inbound marketing, where he creates technology-based content for clients from London to Singapore. Sead is a HubSpot-certified content creator.