New analysis shows that Huawei employees have close ties with the Chinese government.
A recent analysis of Huawei personnel has found that many of the company’s employees have extensive connections to the Chinese military and intelligence organizations, CNBC reports.
The findings are likely to add fuel to the debate among governments around the world over whether to block Huawei’s gear from the rollout of 5G telecoms networks for security reasons.
The research was conducted by Christopher Balding, a professor at Fulbright University Vietnam, and researchers at the Henry Jackson Society, a UK think-tank.
Balding searched through a database of leaked Chinese resumes and found some Huawei employees had also been simultaneously employed by institutions affiliated with the Chinese military. Huawei said it cannot verify “any of these so-called ‘Huawei Employee CVs'” and that it conducts background checks for job candidates with military or government backgrounds.
“One CV appeared to show a person who simultaneously held a position at Huawei and a teaching and research role at a military university through which they were employed by the Chinese People’s Liberation Army,” reads the report. “Balding linked that employee to a section in the PLA that is responsible for the Chinese military’s space, cyber, and electronic warfare capabilities.”
“The circumstantial evidence appears quite strong to support valid concerns about the relationship between Huawei, the PLA, and concerns about intelligence gathering,” Balding said in the paper.
The employment files suggest that some Huawei staff have also worked as agents within China’s Ministry of State Security; worked on joint projects with the Chinese People’s Liberation Army; were educated at China’s leading military academy, and have been employed by a military unit accused of a cyber attack on U.S. corporations.
The US Commerce Department last month placed Huawei on an “entity list” on grounds of national security, a move that curbs its access to US-made components it needs for its equipment. A 90-day reprieve was later issued.
A number of countries have also blocked Huawei from working on their mobile networks and companies have stepped back from the firm following the US ban, citing legal requirements.