NYT: NSA used backdoor into Huawei equipment for spying

While the U.S. has been blocking Huawei from its market over fears about cyber security, the NSA has created a backdoor into the telecom-equipment company's products for spying purposes, the NYT reports, citing documents supplied by Edward Snowden.

One of the NSA's aims was to find links between Huawai and the People's Liberation Army (PLA), which the U.S. believes is the source of much hacking. However, the NSA has also been using its access to spy on targets in other countries.

The central question that the U.S. has is whether Huawei is independent, as the company maintains, or a front for the PLA, as American officials suggest. The documents don't provide an answer.

The revelations add to previous disclosures about NSA spying, which have already hurt Cisco and other U.S. companies, with IBM and Symantec also appearing to have been affected.

Comments (13)
  • King Rat
    , contributor
    Comments (1819) | Send Message
    In the long run it pays to act ethically and if you dig yourself into a hole where you "can't", then perhaps you should quit and start over. I've done that before and it is easier than it sounds. This issue is going to be terrible for US businesses trying to convey trust when they do business abroad. The trust deficit is only getting deeper. Every new revelation shows it is worse than previously thought.


    Cisco may have just received "an offer they could not refuse" from the NSA, or perhaps they jumped at the idea, but either way, Cisco should be very, very grateful that they have no real foreign competitor to compete with Cisco on a global setting. Microsoft almost lost the Chinese market in the '90s, but Cisco's predicament is much worse than Microsoft's ever was.
    23 Mar 2014, 05:05 AM Reply Like
  • samuel_liu
    , contributor
    Comments (2753) | Send Message
    Snowden is a rat. And if any American fell enlightened by his disclosures just indicates the ignorance of the majority!
    23 Mar 2014, 06:45 AM Reply Like
  • chopchop0
    , contributor
    Comments (5265) | Send Message
    Quite the opposite. He was a patriot and defender of the constitution
    23 Mar 2014, 06:52 AM Reply Like
  • Rope a Dope
    , contributor
    Comments (708) | Send Message
    The US Government is the rat here. One of the reasons the US became the wealthiest and most powerful nation in the planet was because of the individual freedoms that used to be guaranteed by the Constitution. When the government begins to take away our freedom, they undermine the strength of our country as well.


    If the domestic threat is so great that the government feels they need to stoop to such measures, might I suggest enforcing our existing immigration laws? Our southern ‘border’ is a joke right now.
    23 Mar 2014, 07:57 AM Reply Like
  • Ohrama
    , contributor
    Comments (569) | Send Message
    I am not defending anything. But it looks like life is a cycle in many respects. Freedom and Hard work brought us the wealth. The same wealth made us complacent both in terns of hard work and defending our freedom. For a while (and to certain extent), we maintained our wealth by passing our problems to the rest of the world (devalue your currency and sell to us for less!) but that is becoming difficult; so we need to move on to extraordinary procedures (!) to see how long we can keep our supremacy! And when we cannot use such tactics on the rest of the world, we will start using them on our population. Then we will have a civil unrest, revolution and back to the cycle.
    23 Mar 2014, 12:23 PM Reply Like
  • cash
    , contributor
    Comments (696) | Send Message
    The US has no credibility. Time and again our govt has proven itself to be a bunch of mealy mouthed, double-talking hypocrites. 'Do as I say, not as I do' is our mantra. Thanks to this Snowden episode, the whole world is getting to see our govt for what it really is. No wonder, Big O & his military cronies have been trying to shut down Mr. Snowden
    23 Mar 2014, 03:23 PM Reply Like
  • Trader's Profit Compass
    , contributor
    Comments (2072) | Send Message
    Plus 1 Chop chop
    24 Mar 2014, 05:22 AM Reply Like
  • Moon Kil Woong
    , contributor
    Comments (13546) | Send Message
    NSA violations of business security only vindicates corporate espionage and theft of trade secrets, etc. Furthermore, trying to protect Cisco from foreign competition of networking is both dumb and indefensible. Cisco is one of the worst technological behemoths which is on a cyclical decline because they have failed to innovate or advance networking for decades now besides buying out competitors.


    In the end, after the US ruined SSL security, inevitably a company will develop a technology even the NSA will have a hard time hacking. As of today, nothing connected to the Internet is safe nor is wireless telecommunications. All of it is hackable and stealable which makes it the biggest security threat, not Huawei or any other "target".


    Any corporate espionage should not be allowed by the NSA or other without a proper warrant disclosing the scope and without disclosure. This especially goes for US companies that get hacked by our own government like Facebook. Furthermore, US companies shouldn't be forced to get embroiled in government spying like AT&T Google, Yahoo, Microsoft, Dell, and IBM.


    If the government wants to destroy the US economy and the domestic tech industry, they are doing a fine job. Much more so than any terrorist or Chinese hacker can or ever will do. This must stop! Technology is meant to be a global enabler, not a nefarious tool of the state.
    23 Mar 2014, 12:26 PM Reply Like
  • James Bjorkman
    , contributor
    Comments (2778) | Send Message
    The US government obviously feels there are no limits to who and what it can spy upon and then use the information for who knows what purposes. No warrants needed, no permission granted, just an exercise of imperial prerogative. Might makes right, apparently.


    I, personally, have a problem with that.
    23 Mar 2014, 12:50 PM Reply Like
  • samuel_liu
    , contributor
    Comments (2753) | Send Message
    Americans think they are in control of their destinies, accept reality!


    God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change,


    The courage to change the things I can,


    And wisdom to know the difference.
    23 Mar 2014, 01:04 PM Reply Like
  • SoldHigh
    , contributor
    Comments (991) | Send Message
    It's how Obama's control freaks at the NSA watch over the average Americans that scare most people.
    23 Mar 2014, 04:06 PM Reply Like
  • khaz
    , contributor
    Comments (161) | Send Message
    I'm shocked at the naivete on display here. I would expect a more Machiavellian approach. Or is this a blog on politics?
    23 Mar 2014, 06:47 PM Reply Like
  • Viper740
    , contributor
    Comments (466) | Send Message
    Smart move by the NSA. I read this as very good news. We need to know what the bad guys are up to.
    23 Mar 2014, 09:10 PM Reply Like
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