China’s Huawei spied, installed data ‘back door’ in Pakistan – archived source

China’s Huawei spied, installed data ‘back door’ in Pakistan: Report

Huawei’s alleged back door was located in a database that consolidated sensitive information, including national ID card records, foreigner registrations, tax records and criminal records, for law enforcement, a US company has said.

Published on Aug 15, 2021 10:49 AM IST

By hindustantimes.com | Written by Meenakshi Ray

China’s Huawei Technologies Co stole trade secrets and spied on Pakistan, a small US-based contractor has alleged and filed a federal court, according to a report. Business Efficiency Solutions LLC (BES) has said in the lawsuit filed on Wednesday in California district court that Huawei asked it to set up a system in China that gave the company access to sensitive information about citizens and government officials from a safe-cities surveillance project in Lahore, the Wall Street Journal has claimed.

BES has said in the lawsuit that Huawei’s alleged back door was located in a database that consolidated sensitive information, including national ID card records, foreigner registrations, tax records and criminal records, for law enforcement. “Huawei-China uses the proprietary DES (Data Exchange System) system as a back door from China into Lahore to gain access, manipulate, and extract sensitive data important to Pakistan’s national security,” the BES lawsuit alleges, according to WSJ.

The California-based software company has said after it installed the DES in Lahore, Huawei demanded in 2017 that it install a duplicate DES in China’s Suzhou. BES said it would give Huawei direct access to the data being gathered in Pakistan. The company said in the lawsuit it asked Huawei to obtain approval from Pakistani authorities before building the Suzhou system.

Muhammad Kamran Khan, chief operating officer of the Punjab Safe Cities Authority, which oversees the Lahore project, said they have begun looking into BES’s allegations. “Our team is examining the accusations and sought an explanation from Huawei. We have also put a data security check on Huawei after this issue. So far, there has been no evidence of any data-stealing by Huawei,” Khan told WSJ.

A Huawei spokesperson said the company doesn’t comment on ongoing legal cases, according to WSJ. “Huawei respects the intellectual property of others, and there is no evidence Huawei ever implanted any back door in our products,” she said.

Huawei has been under scrutiny for allegedly installing “backdoor” vulnerabilities to spy for China and the US has also said that the company’s equipment could enable Chinese espionage in the countries that install it. Huawei has repeatedly said it would never spy on behalf of any government.

According to several reports, China last week hacked multiple public and private sector groups in Israel in an attempt to gain business interests. The Chinese have been conducting similar cyberattacks in Iran, Saudi Arabia and other countries.

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