back to article Orange has an elegant solution to Huawei question in France: We'll stick with Nokia and Ericsson for 5G networks

Orange, France's largest telecoms company, will use Nokia and Ericsson to deploy its 5G networks as pressure to ban Huawei from European networks mounts. The decision will please US authorities, who have pushed European allies to ban Huawei from their 5G infrastructure. Washington argues using the Chinese firm's kit might …

  1. alain williams Silver badge

    So: neither Huawei nor Cisco

    Has anyone done analysis on how spook-clean are Nokia & Ericsson ?

    1. Julz Silver badge
      Big Brother

      Re: So: neither Huawei nor Cisco

      Don't need to. All the relevant agencies already know.

    2. TheIO

      Re: So: neither Huawei nor Cisco

      I don't know about you, but I'm fairly certain I have less to fear from the Swedish or Finnish governments than I do from the American or Chinese.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        ha

        best read up on Swedish and Finnish history then

      2. _LC_ Silver badge
        Unhappy

        Re: So: neither Huawei nor Cisco

        Is that you, Julian?

      3. Clunking Fist Bronze badge

        Re: So: neither Huawei nor Cisco

        "but I'm fairly certain I have less to fear from the Swedish" So you've never commented, tweeted, blogged or upvoted a post about FGM then?

  2. Pascal Monett Silver badge

    "using [Huawei] might enable Beijing to conduct surveillance and intelligence gathering"

    And using Cisco will enable the USA to do the same.

    Nice to know that there are some alternatives.

  3. sanmigueelbeer Silver badge

    Wait ... if no one is buying Cisco, does this mean that Trump will "ban" Nokia and Ericsson too?

    1. Charlie Clark Silver badge

      Does Cisco even have the technology for this? Must have passed me by that Cisco has a huge department of radio engineers.

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Huawei is the ONLY company that has opened its source code to governments for inspection.

    Meanwhile no government talks about the constant stream of zero day vulnerabilities patched by cisco ... e.g.

    https://www.zdnet.com/article/cisco-critical-bugs-nexus-data-center-switch-software-needs-patching-now/

    https://threatpost.com/cisco-high-severity-bugs-2/148706/

    1. mj.jam

      Cisco has this as well, and not just for governments

      Cisco has a Technology Verification Service for this sort of thing.

      https://blogs.cisco.com/security/introducing-the-cisco-technology-verification-service

      https://www.cisco.com/c/en/us/about/trust-center/transparency.html#~tab-tvs

      Obviously no idea how easy it is to get in to do the inspection, but I can imagine that most European governments would qualify.

  5. Dan 55 Silver badge
    Joke

    "The decision will please US authorities"

    That part of the sentence needs to be marked with this icon.

    1. Spanners Silver badge
      Meh

      Re: "The decision will please US authorities"

      That sentence indicates that someone has not been paying attention.

      The only reason behind the US' dislike of Huawei is that they are not under the control of the US. There are no US companies profiting and, more importantly, there is no possibility of them quietly giving access to US spooks and corporations to the insides.

      It has between very little and absolutely no relevance to security. The security claim is to give SCROTUS something to pretend when the WTO accuses him of protectionism.

      1. toejam

        Re: "The decision will please US authorities"

        Not necessarily. It all depends on which "US authorities" you are talking to.

        The better US intelligence agencies probably have a significant cache of vulnerabilities that they can work with. It might take more time to find them versus baked-in back doors, but Huawei has a reputation for poor code quality, so it probably isn't that difficult. So letting people think that the US doesn't have back doors is probably advantageous to their snooping of their others' networks.

        The people and agencies that are upset with Huawei because of economic and nationalistic reasons are probably going to be the ones who are happy to hear this news. And I have little doubt that they were playing up the more sensational security threat aspect because nobody cares about boring corporate espionage and IP law.

        1. Dan 55 Silver badge

          Re: "The decision will please US authorities"

          The better US intelligence agencies probably have a significant cache of vulnerabilities that they can work with.

          I imagine that Huawei code review centre in the UK has come in handy.

    2. Charlie Clark Silver badge

      Re: "The decision will please US authorities"

      I don't think this decision has anything to do with that. The French would quite easily use North Korean kit to piss off the Americans, if it thought it was safe. This the usual French industrial politics: IIRC Nokia got what was left of Alcatel-Lucent's networking kit and, as it's already in use at Orange, sticking with it makes most sense. Ericsson, Nokia and Huawei already cross-license much of the relevant IP so it shouldn't mean too much of a delay. For the technology that nobody in Europe needs right now™ anyway.

      A lot of noise about 5G is being made by industry bodies basically looking for handouts.

      1. HildyJ Silver badge
        Facepalm

        Re: "The decision will please US authorities"

        Change is always the enemy of corporate budget departments. It's no surprise that Orange is going with what they have because upgrading kit always costs more in the short term and this year's income statement is all that corporations care about. Does anyone really think that Orange cares whether its customers are spied on by the Americans or Chinese?

  6. Al fazed
    IT Angle

    some clarity

    ha ha ha

    no - stoppit

    ha ha ha

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Thierry Breton wrote a couple of decent SF novels in the 80s where bad guys (the Soviet Union and friends) tried just that, taking over by compromising mainframes and telcos.

    There were hot sex scenes, too, which we're still missing here.

    1. julian_n

      Sex scenes are so 90s - like in the BT Boardroom when one director's wife allegedly stormed into a board meeting after finding out about his daliances.

      Those were the days.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        We're talking *sex scenes in front of a mainframe terminal* here.

        Seriously.

  8. BeerTokens

    Whats the point of standards!?!

    'But for others, changing from Chinese-made kit is a costly decision. Telecoms association GSMA has said that replacing Huawei and fellow Chinese firm ZTE's gear, which is used in 40 per cent of European telco equipment, would add €55bn to the cost of building 5G networks in Europe and delay the technology by 18 months.'

    Surely all of the equipment is standards based and can operate with other standards based equipment if not someone in procurement needs to be dragged over a few hot coals.

    It's as if no one has learnt anything! We build things using proprietary gear, we end up in this situation, nobody learns. rinse repeat.

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Orange is the most expensive of French telcos, so they'll have the money to buy stuff. And of course, the French government still has a majority stake in it, so no matter what, it makes political sense for them to buy local. It's no more likely for them to buy Huawei than to buy Cisco.

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Compensation

    Made me wonder if BT, Voda and H3G in the UK could pursue compensation from the government for the 35% RAN cap. Suppose this Huawei limitation was not in their license agreements and could not have been expected. There again I guess it says they will honour all current and future regulatory legislation. Supposing the Boris edict becomes law as opposed to a sound bite.

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