Huawei not spying on customers, Mrs Joy Tan assures
As more people learn about Huawei, they ask whether we can be trusted.
For example, what would happen if a government in one of the 170+ countries where we operate asked us to put spyware in our equipment?
It’s a fair question, and plenty of people are asking it. Here are a few thoughts in response:
We have a strong track record spanning 30 years
Over the past three decades, our products have been used in more than 170 countries and supported more than 3 billion users – close to 40% of the planet. We have never suffered a major security breach.
We invest heavily in security
Our products have achieved the highest security ratings and certifications in the tech industry. They’ve been independently validated. For example, Huawei achieved the highest Cyber Essentials Plus certification from the UK in 2018.
Even so, we continue to invest in security. Huawei was one of the top five R&D spenders globally in 2018. This year we will increase our investment to more than US$15 billion. A significant portion of that spending is devoted to improving security.
Huawei is an independent, employee-owned company
We’re 100% private and owned by about 97,000 shareholding employees. Our largest shareholder, company founder Ren Zhengfei, owns just over 1% of the company’s shares.
There are no state or institutional owners that can influence us. Our interests are completely aligned with those of our customers.
China’s laws do not require Huawei to spy on anyone
Media reports and governments have said that under Chinese law, Huawei could be compelled to put spyware in its equipment, but this is not true. China’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs has made it clear that no Chinese law requires any company to install backdoors. This interpretation of the law has been independently confirmed by two different law firms, including Clifford Chance, headquartered in London.
Huawei has never been asked to compromise security …
No government has ever asked us to provide confidential information about any customers or nations.
…And we would not do so if asked.
Not long ago, Ren Zhengfei told a roomful of reporters that he would rather shut the company down than violate customers’ trust by implanting backdoors in Huawei equipment.
We stand by our customers, even under extreme circumstances
Every company claims to be customer-centric. But for us, this means no just providing good service, it means total commitment.
Our products let people communicate. Sometimes, extreme measures are needed to maintain or establish communications during the most difficult times.
For example, when a Thai soccer team became trapped in a cave in June 2018, Huawei engineers helped rescuers by creating a mobile network deep inside the cave.
Following the March 2011, earthquake and tsunami that struck Japan, killing more than 15,000 people and causing the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear reactor to melt down, Huawei stayed behind and flew in additional people to re-establish communications networks.
During the Ebola crisis in Sierra Leone from 2014-2016, Huawei staff did not evacuate but voluntarily remained by their customer’s side to support communication networks.
The point is, we work extraordinarily hard to safeguard our customers’ security and earn their trust. We will always stand by them, and we will never violate their trust by implanting spyware in our equipment. It is simply not something we would do voluntarily, and we cannot be compelled to do it, legally or by other means.