Vodafone found security flaws in Huawei products

Chinese firm says historical vulnerabilities discovered in 2011 and 2012 had been addressed at the time

A taxi drives past a Huawei advert at a bus stop in central London on April 29, 2019. British Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt has urged caution over the role of China's Huawei in the UK, saying the government should think carefully before opening its doors to the technology giant to develop next-generation 5G mobile networks. His comments come after Prime Minister Theresa May conditionally allowed China's Huawei to build the UK 5G network, information that was leaked to a newspaper from top secret discussions between senior ministers and security officials, a leak that has caused a scandal that has rocked Britain's splintered government. / AFP / Tolga Akmen / Tolga Akmen
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Telecoms group Vodafone found security flaws in equipment supplied by China's Huawei to its Italian business in 2011 and 2012, the two companies said on Tuesday.

Vodafone, Europe's biggest telecoms group, said it had found security vulnerabilities in two products and that both incidents had been resolved quickly.

Huawei said it was made aware of historical vulnerabilities in 2011 and 2012 and that they had been addressed at the time, according to Reuters.

"Software vulnerabilities are an industry-wide challenge," the Chinese firm said. "Like every Information and Communications Technology vendor we have a well-established public notification and patching process, and when a vulnerability is identified we work closely with our partners to take the appropriate corrective action."

The news comes after the British envoy to the United Nations said the UK was open to working with Chinese companies including Huawei as long as the country’s national security isn’t jeopardised, putting the ally at odds with the Trump administration on a top foreign policy issue.

“We will not take a decision that would compromise British national security,” UN Ambassador Karen Pierce told Bloomberg on Monday. “There are some issues where we don’t wholly share the analysis of the US, much as we share the same strategic policy.”

The US has sought to persuade its allies to ban all Huawei products from next-generation 5G telecommunications networks, contending that components made by the Chinese company could be used for spying purposes, but the American efforts have had limited success. Ramping up the threats, secretary of state Michael Pompeo this month said the US might hold back intelligence-sharing with Nato allies if the Chinese technology is part of their communications systems.

“We’ve made clear that if the risk exceeds the threshold for the United States, we simply won’t be able to share that information any longer,” Mr Pompeo said on April 4 after meeting with counterparts from Nato in Washington.