US official warns against using 5G technology from “totalitarian states”, hints at Huawei controversy

WASHINGTON: The United States on Tuesday urged countries to consider long-term implications of adong 5G technology from nations that have pursued a totalitarian vision of the role of the state in peoples’ lives, a comment directed at China and its controversy-embroiled tech giant Huawei.

“We think that it’s absolutely critical for countries to be considering all of the long-term consequences and ramifications of going with suppliers from countries that have pursued a totalitarian vision for the role of the state in peoples” lives and in the economy and in the culture and the like,” said a senior administration official.

“So that’s really something that all countries need to take heed of,” the official said when asked about its message to countries that are planning to opt for 5G technology from Huawei, which has links with the Chinese government.

Raising security concerns, the Trump Administration has been asking countries, including India, to not opt for Huawei.

Irrespective of the country, the United States believes that having safe and reliable infrastructure for 5G systems is critical for all nations” ability to preserve their sovereignty in the 5G era, the official noted.

With 5G one is talking about a paradigm shift in technology, not an incremental one, the official emphasized.

“One in which all of our daily lives are going to be saturated with sensors that are going to be communicating with one another, not just the old paradigm of a couple cell phones talking to a core network through cell phone towers and routers and then coming back down to another cell user,” said the official.