The FBI, CIA and NSA say American citizens shouldn't use Huawei or ZTE phones


#1

Anyone see the article on CNN stating several US intelligence agencies are recommending not using Huawei or ZTE phone as these Chinese phone manufacturers may be using your phone to gather intelligence?


#2

I saw this article this am… I am concerned but don’t think there is much relevant intelligence info in my world… but don’t like idea they can gather data… What to do now?


#3

I’m going to try to stay non-political on this answer, but man, it is hard.

Congratulations to the chiefs of our security agencies for ringing the alarm bells on a far fetched maybe while failing in many of the things that would actually increase American security. (https://www.nytimes.com/2018/02/16/us/fbi-nikolas-cruz-shooting.html)

This whole thing is absurd, for a few reasons:

  1. If the Chinese thought cell phones were a good vector for spying, wouldn’t it be far more effective to compromise iPhones that are made in China, using chips made in China and therefore have access to about 35% of phones in the US, rather than compromise manufacturers that combined sell sub 3% of the phones in the US?

  2. The Chinese economy would collapse without the US consumer. Given the relative ineffectiveness of such a strategy, is it worth risking the Chinese economy?

  3. On another note, Huwawei has its hardware at the heart of many many networks globally. Given the fact that internet/cellular traffic passes through their gear in volumes massively bigger than whatever can be gained from compromised cell phones, wouldn’t it make sense for them to target THIS.

Basically, IMHO, this warning is nothing but the continued trend of xenophobic garbage being spewed to distract the American people from the actual failings of these agencies.


#4

If anything else I think the government sees two non-american competitors gaining ground quickly in new markets and want to cripple their growth.

What kind of intelligence would they hope to gather that Google has not already made publicly available (or purchasable)?

I could see this being a concern for military personnel but with that point they should not be allowed to carry smartphones at all. Which would make a lot of people upset.


#5

The app that has caused a lot of issues on ZTE and Huawei as well a many other low end phones is called Adups. It was intended to only be used within the China market. Apparently many phones outside of the China Market made it to other countries.

Another issue came up and this is Huawei’s response:

I’ve scanned my Huawei using several different methods and so far I haven’t found any evidence of my RW phone being infected with Adups or Skygofree.

Regardless of one’s political views, the bottom line is to be careful/cautious when downloading apps, especially free apps.


#6

FBI, CIA, and NSA are already privy to all of our data (if you think otherwise, you’re pretty naive). They probably just don’t want any competition in that arena.

Personally, I feel less uncomfortable about the Chinese knowing everything I do than the US government (think about it - which one has the ability to do more immediate damage to or wreak more havoc upon my personal life).


#7

Then, there’s the whole question of competence:

I currently live two towns and just under 10 miles away from Parkland, FL. I grew up in Watertown, MA, where the Boston Marathon bombers were killed/captured. A childhood friend was among the police officers who exchanged fire with the latter.


#8

You guys are insane if you trust the Chinese government. While they probably don’t care about our private lives like the NSA and FBI do, they do care about stealing corporate and military secrets. China has a rotten reputation regarding its own citizens and especially its neighbors. In any case, I’m glad I moved on from my Huawei. It was not a very good phone. Risking one less government spying on me is icing on the cake.


#9

No one said anything at all about trusting the Chinese government.


#10

Correct me if I’m wrong but you moved on to a Moto X4, which is made in China by a Chinese company (Lenovo)? Probably no government influence there.


#11

I moved on last year when it was deemed GSM phones weren’t optimized for my zip. RW offered me the opportunity to swap for a CDMA provisioned G4. My Ascend had abysmal battery performance. Have a Honor 6X that blows the doors off of the RW Huawei offering.
.

Thought of Moto/Lenovo earlier. They may not suggest banning them after government blessing their purchase of a chunk of IBM and Moto.

Their brokers insure them the iPhones are safe.

:flight_departure:


#12

The bottom line just is that unless you’re willing to live in a challenging manner, you’re going to be hands on things made in China every single day. Right now, I’m tying this on an HP laptop that was assembled in China and shipped directly to my door from there.

Let’s just look at the big manufacturers: Samsung – Korean company but in 2017 they produced 50% of their phones in Vietnam, 42% in China and only 8% in Korea.

Motorola (Lenovo) – Chinese company, all phones made in China

Sony – Looks like this is where everyone needs to go as they and Kyocera are the only two companies left making phones in Japan.

Alcatel – Owned by TCL, a Chinese Company, all phones made in China

Apple – American company, phones produced by Foxconn which is a Taiwanese company but much of the production is in China.

HTC & Asus – Majority product in Taiwan with the rest in China.


#13

You’re right. I did no realize Lenovo was a Chinese company.

In any case, I’m still annoyed at the Ascend 5w (Honor 5x). It’s nice to have a phone that just plain works in the X4 (besides the way it notifies you of missed calls and texts).


#14

Here’s what I will say: I am not sure how anything I would say would ever benefit the Chinese government. I don’t want anyone spying on me, but I don’t think they have proof that they ever were.


#15

It’s not you personally they care about. It’s what you do at work. If you work with trade secrets or anything you would need a clearance for, then you would have cause for concern.

Our government is the one who wants to spy on you, and I’m pretty sure they already have through things like voice activated smart TVs, smart phones, and I would not be surprised if they used Alexa or the Google Assistant.


#16

Coming from ‘~ground-zero’ in the Ferguson, Mo., these are things that can destroy a local economy, much less Global economies. The idea that any form (manufacturer) of modern day technological devices are better at “spying” on us, over another, is ridiculous.

In general, if you want to use technology in your life, you have to give up some privacy. Those privy to that information for the sake of our “safety” have failed at their task miserably, or criminally, from my point of view.

:neutral_face: not directed a rolandh, just say’in