I’ve been reading cyber threat intelligence assessments since the beginnings of the digital age. Not sure if I’ve seen a million of them but it sure seems like I have. I feel like the one I just read by Priscilla Moriuchi at Recorded Future is one of the best and I would like to endorse it to you for your review.
You really need to read the full report so I will not really summarize it here. But I will provide a couple of anecdotes on why it is so important.
The subject is Huawei. More specifically, the report deals with the supply chain risks posed to nations, companies and individuals who use Huawei products and services. Huawei is widely known in the tech community for years of aggressive unfair competition in pursuit of networking contracts around the globe. They moved from networking equipment into many other fields including production of smartphones and other mobile devices. They are a major builder of next-generation cellular networks (5G).
Many national security professionals or technologists point out the security issues with Huawei. The fact that they are influenced by a country where the rule of law is subservient to the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) means they should be treated with suspicion. Globally, governments have hinted that there are many other risks and there have been public releases of some of their rationale there, but given that citizens of open societies don’t always trust their own governments the information being released by governments is not always treated as valid.
One highly respected enterprise technologist recently asked me: “Are you really afraid of Huawei?” I replied: “I am not afraid but the fact is they are under the influence of a Communist party that does not have our interests in mind.” I can’t say I was able to change the mind of my friend, but might have, if I had been armed with the insights provided by Recorded Future.
During a recent visit to Japan I was placed in the uncomfortable position of having to tell many senior executives about the risks they are taking by working with many CCP controlled firms, including Huawei. Agreements with telecom companies and vendors are giving Huawei smart phones premium placement in most consumer facing stores, for example. The risks Japan is taking will be hard to mitigate and the relationships being established will be hard to reverse. But, if they are informed by facts they can make better decisions. This is another reason I was glad to see this report.
With that said, I would recommend you take time to read the entire report. I’ve decided to read it enough times to commit it to memory. Find it at:
- An OODAcast Conversation with Dr. David Bray of the Atlantic Council Geotech Center (Part One) - April 3, 2020
- OODAcast– A Conversation with Dan Gerstein - April 1, 2020
- Update on The End Coronavirus Project and Need for Volunteers - March 28, 2020