How Can Independent Testing and Open Technologies Help the Telecoms Market?

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By Dimitris Mavrakis | 1Q 2019 | IN-5417


Proprietary Infrastructure and Vendor Bans


Telecoms-related media have recently been dominated by discussions of banning Huawei and ZTE, while many governments have already mandated that equipment developed in China should not be selected for national infrastructure and 5G networks. At the same time, there has never been any proof that any telecom vendor--Chinese or not--has intentionally included back-doors, malware, or spying software on telecom infrastructure. Naturally, network equipment consists of IT platforms running proprietary software that will include bugs and security vulnerabilities and will depend on third party software that will also be insecure (e.g., almost all vendor equipment were affected by the SSL Heartbleed vulnerability).

The market is now experiencing a standstill, with politicians are assessing whether Chinese infrastructure poses a true threat for national security, and several operators--particularly in Europe--are pausing their 5G deployment strategies until there is a definitive conclusion to the Chinese security saga. There is a bigger issue at stake though: if the…

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