US FCC bans the import of electronic equipment from Chinese firms

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The U.S. Federal Communications Commission announced it will completely ban the import of electronic equipment from Huawei, ZTE, Hytera, Hikvision, and Dahua.

The U.S. Federal Communications Commission (FCC) announced the total ban for telecom and surveillance equipment from Chinese companies Huawei, ZTE, Hytera, Hikvision, and Dahua due to an “unacceptable” national security threat.

The US government has already added the companies to the Covered List and the new rules aims at protecting the Americans from national security threats involving telecommunications.

“The Federal Communications Commission adopted new rules prohibiting communications equipment deemed to pose an unacceptable risk to national security from being authorized for importation or sale in the United States. This is the latest step by the Commission to protect our nation’s communications networks.” reads the announcement published by FCC. “In recent years, the Commission, Congress, and the Executive Branch have taken multiple actions to build a more secure and resilient supply chain for communications equipment and services within the United States.”

“The FCC is committed to protecting our national security by ensuring that untrustworthy communications equipment is not authorized for use within our borders, and we are continuing that work here,” said Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel. “These new rules are an important part of our ongoing actions to protect the American people from national security threats involving telecommunications.”

The new rules implement the directive in the Secure Equipment Act of 2021, which was signed by President Biden in November.

Chinese firms Hytera, Hikvision, and Dahua have to provide details about the safeguards they have implemented on the sale of their devices for government use and the surveillance of critical infrastructure facilities.

In September, the U.S. Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has added Pacific Network Corp, ComNet (USA) LLC, and China Unicom (Americas) Operations Limited, to the Covered List.

The FCC explained that the above companies are subject to the exploitation, influence and control of the Chinese government, and the national security risks associated with such exploitation, influence, and control.

This week, the British government ordered its departments to stop installing Chinese security cameras at sensitive buildings due to security risks. The Government has ordered departments to disconnect the camera from core networks and to consider removing them.

The risk is related to the use of security cameras manufactured by Chinese-owned companies Dahua and Hikvision. 

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Pierluigi Paganini

(SecurityAffairs – hacking, Federal Communications Commission)

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