Former NSW contractor charged with unauthorised data access – Security- Tempemail – Blog – 10 minute

A NSW man has been charged over allegedly accessing the servers of an unnamed Australian-based sales company without authorisation while he was employed as a contractor.
The 58-year-old was served with a court attendance notice in December following “extensive investigations” from NSW Police’s cybercrime squad detectives.
He is charged with causing an unauthorised computer function with the intention of committing a serious offence, which – like other serious indictable offences – carries a penalty of five years or more.
Detectives have been investigating unauthorised access to the server of the sales company since 2018 under the auspices of strike force dedal. The company has not been named.
Police will allege that the man “remotely accessed the server and downloaded documents” while he was employed as a contractor at the company.
They will also alleged that he “deleted more than 350 downloaded files after a court order was issued to access his computer”.
The man has also been charged with several “judicial offences”, including tampering with evidence with the intent to misled judicial tribunal, perverting the course of justice and fabricating false evidence with the intent to mislead judicial tribunal.
The man is due to appear at Bankstown Local Court later today.

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ANZ and CBA push for consolidation of EFTPOS, BPAY and NPP – Finance – Cloud – Security- Tempemail – Blog – 10 minute

The days of using EFTPOS, BPAY and the humble BSB number to make transactions could soon be numbered.
After around 50 years providing the core infrastructure that still powers direct bank debit account transactions, along with ATMs, a once in a generation consolidation of payments platforms has inched closer, after two of the big four banks indicated support for collapsing Australia’s biggest mainframe stack.
Both the Commonwealth Bank of Australia and the ANZ Banking Group have lodged submissions with the Reserve Bank of Australia’s review of payments regulation saying the current menagerie of payments schemes and infrastructure needs to be reviewed with a view to an industry-wide platform.
That’s one industry-wide platform – not the current siloes of BPAY, EFTPOS, cheques and in some banks even passbooks.
While most Australians see EFTPOS and BPAY as brands in their own right, in reality they operate as mutually-owned low-cost payments infrastructure providers for banks, what were credit unions and building societies and big merchants.   
Any final decision to consolidate – which is still a couple years away – would have massive ramifications for literally tens of billions of dollars of bank-owned systems initially rolled out in the 1980s, predominantly on IBM’s zSeries (or earlier) running COBOL and dozens of bespoke and proprietary legacy applications that linger to this day.
Known as the ‘direct entry’ system (as in you don’t have to go through intermediaries) the complex web of interbank facilities lets Australians deposit money straight from their bank accounts to another person, biller or merchant.
“In the long term, the direct entry system should be retired as part of a broader rationalisation of payment systems over the period of 2025 to 2030,” the CBA said in its submission to the RBA.
“CBA supports AusPayNet’s industry consultation on ‘A Future State for Australian Payments Systems’ to co-ordinate industry activity to reach this target.
“For the NPP to be a viable alternative to direct entry, particularly for bulk corporate payments, the costs of processing and settlement will need to become comparable to direct entry costs.”
The ANZ, though more restrained, was also supportive of an infrastructure roll-up.
“The present structure for industry governance and provision of domestic payment systems has been an important foundation for the positive performance of the Australian payments system,” ANZ said.
“ANZ believes that it is now timely to consider options for governance and provision of industry-based infrastructure and programs given the extent and complexity of the work to be done and the dynamic environment.”
Going the distance
The systems in question weave complex, maze-like network of bilateral bank-to-bank pipes run under a series of standards known as the Direct Entry System that is overseen by the Reserve Bank of Australia and industry self-regulatory body AusPayNet.
It’s a system that has been technologically superseded by the New Payments Platform in the same way Qantas’ once ubiquitous wide body workhorse, the Boeing 767 has been surpassed by the 787 Dreamliner.
The networking phenomenon of the direct entry (DE) system that millions of Australians now take for granted today was established, like the 767, in the 1980s, alongside the then world-leading EFTPOS (electronic funds transfer at point of sale) and the equally modernist ATM networks.
In terms of wiring, it’s not all that pretty today, but it worked a treat until the early noughties when banks were seriously considering dumping their own payments infrastructure for that of the credit card schemes (Visa, Mastercard and Amex) that doled out handsome interchange fees extracted from merchants.
Having watched Australia’s domestic credit card, Bankcard, rise and fall, the RBA decided Australia might want its own infrastructure rather than outsourcing it to global schemes.
Because that could be very costly in the long term.
The 1980’s never died
Although reworked and enhanced many times over (like a 767), the Direct Entry system still essentially runs on the same, pre-internet network architecture probably best recognised for its BSB numbers (bank, state, branch) and referred to in the payments industry as ‘proprietary rails’ because they were not US owned.
(As an aside, former CBA chief and reformed Assembler coder Sir Ralph Norris helped write the trans-tasman EFTPOS and enjoyed ribbing his Australian colleagues by reminding them it went live in New Zealand first.)
However the pre-internet limitations (data size limitation in messaging being the biggest) of the direct entry system have gradually become more encumbering as time and technology marches on, especially now the real-time New Payments Platform (NPP) is up and running.
Having taken more than a decade of regulatory biffo to come to life – a core skill of Australian banking oligopoly is its capacity to disagree on any common technological innovation unless it’s forced upon institutions – the gradual but relentless growth of the NPP ultimately creates some technological redundancies.
Both BPAY and EFTPOS, which the direct entry system underpins, are the two most obvious low-cost transaction behemoths affected by any consolidation that could potentially see their functions rolled across onto the underlying NPP architecture.
And like the NPP, EFTPOS and BPAY are essentially owned by the main banks and other institutions, hence the ultimate disinclination to keep running three sets of infrastructure.
Preserving sovereign infrastructure
Understanding how Australia arrived at the creation of the NPP and its implications requires a bit of historical context.
EFTPOS, which facilitates debit based electronic transactions for plastic cards – that is draws directly from peoples’ bank accounts including allowing cash withdrawals – has worked well for decades, but has been essentially confined to the Australian and New Zealand market.
EFTPOS has also had two big technological handicaps. The first is that because global schemes Mastercard and Visa initially dominated tap-and-go or contactless standards based on their own rails – with the blessing of banks – they essentially locked EFTPOS out of contactless functionality, which has only recently been extended to EFTPOS.
Even then, because most banks issue what’s known as ‘dual network’ debit cards, contactless debit tap transactions for the most part default to Mastercard and Visa’s payments rails, cutting EFTPOS out.
Banks and supermarkets loved EFTPOS when it first hit, with Woolworths and Coles essentially made shareholders because they would give out cash at the till. But as cash transactions waned, and payments tilted from credit cards to debit cards, tap transactions took over cutting EFTPOS out.
That’s why when you make tap transactions on a debit Mastercard over $100, you get offered the ‘credit’ option on a payments terminal rather than ‘savings’ or ‘cheque’. The $100 limit before a PIN is invoked, as an aside, stems from what the US card giants estimated would be the upper limit of a tank of petrol.
Coles recently gave Visa debit contactless the flick, reverting contactless back to EFTPOS now that it could.
That move followed a similar play by Woolworths a decade ago to rein back hefty interchange fees paid on ‘scheme debit’ payments.
Since then the shift towards debit payments, rather than credit cards has continued at pace.
And then came the internet …
The other massive hurdle EFTPOS has faced is online transactions.
Because the internet and online transactions grew up in the US, online transactional standards, for better and worse, have largely the credit card rails.
In simplistic terms, online card transactions from their genesis were inherently insecure, relying on card numbers being sent in the clear in the same way you’d write down your credit card number and CVV on a mail order form.
That’s why online card fraud is referred to as ‘card-not-present’ (CNP) fraud, because the mag stripe or chip never actually hits a terminal. In Australia CNP fraud is now more than $470 million a year, almost all of which is worn by merchants, not banks or card schemes.
Card fraud is so prolific even Reserve Bank Governor Philip Lowe has publicly outed himself as a victim, revealing he had to get his kids to spot him some cash for the weekend after his cards got pulled.
In blunt terms, the man who signs Australia’s banknotes was left cashless thanks to the deficient PCI-DSS standard that credit card companies claim is world class.
But as huge amounts of payments went online, banks and merchants who were big billers soon realised fees as high as 3 percent were just not going to cut it.
… and BPAY
To get around the steep percentage fees initially charged by credit card giants for online debit transactions, big merchants (utilities especially) joined forces with banks to create BPAY as a work-around to EFTPOS’ lack of online functionality.
The reason was simple. Big quarterly bills (rates, utilities, telecommunications etc)were simply costing merchants too much, so another bank-backed transactional hub linking to the direct entry system was created.
As we’ve reported, BPAY has been racing to redefine itself in the face of the advent of the NPP, including providing overlay services.
Both BPAY and EFTPOS have launched extensive submissions arguing why the will continue to be relevant as stand-alone entities.
Westpac and the NAB also lodged submissions to the RBA review that are understood to be confidential.
We may not know for some time what those banks have proposed.
What we do know is that the biggest push for bank infrastructure consolidation in fifty years is now off and running.

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Facebook cancels San Francisco summit on coronavirus fears – Networking – Security- Tempemail – Blog – 10 minute

Facebook Inc said on Friday it had cancelled its global marketing summit scheduled for next month in San Francisco due to coronavirus-related risks.
“Out of an abundance of caution, we cancelled our global marketing summit due to evolving public health risks related to coronavirus,” a company spokesman said.
The event, scheduled for March 9 to March 12 at the Moscone Center, was expected to see over 4,000 participants.
Earlier this week, Mobile World Congress (MWC), the annual telecoms industry gathering in Barcelona, was cancelled after a mass exodus by exhibitors on coronavirus fears.
Major U.S. tech companies including Facebook, Cisco Systems Inc and AT&T had pulled out of MWC.
The virus, which originated in the Chinese city of Wuhan, has killed over 1,300 people so far and infected more than 63,800 people on the Chinese mainland.

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Twitter says Olympics, IOC accounts hacked – Security- Tempemail – Blog – 10 minute

Twitter said on Saturday that an official Twitter account of the Olympics and the International Olympic Committee’s (IOC) media Twitter account had been hacked and temporarily locked.
The accounts were hacked through a third-party platform, a spokesperson for the social media platform said in an emailed statement, without giving further details.
“As soon as we were made aware of the issue, we locked the compromised accounts and are working closely with our partners to restore them,” the Twitter spokesperson said.
A spokesperson for the IOC separately said that the IOC was investigating the potential breach.
Last month, the official Twitter accounts of several U.S. Tempemail Football League (NFL) teams, including the San Francisco 49ers and Kansas City Chiefs, were hacked a few days ahead of the Super Bowl.
Earlier this month, some of Facebook’s official Twitter accounts were briefly compromised.

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IBM withdraws from RSA conference over coronavirus fears – Networking – Security – Software- Tempemail – Blog – 10 minute

International Business Machines Corp on Friday said it had cancelled its participation in the RSA cyber security conference due to coronavirus-related concerns.
“The health of IBMers is our primary concern as we continue to monitor upcoming events and travel relative to Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19)”, the company said in a tweet.
The event is scheduled to take place Feb. 24–28 in San Francisco.
RSA said in a statement that it would proceed as scheduled despite IBM’s decision to no longer participate in the conference as a Platinum Sponsor.
The number of individuals, including those from IBM, who have cancelled their registration is about 0.79 percent of the total number of expected attendees, RSA said.
The total number of exhibitors, including IBM, who have cancelled their participation as a sponsor or exhibitor is eight, with six of them from China, one from the United States and one from Canada, RSA added.
Earlier in the day, Facebook Inc said it had cancelled its global marketing summit scheduled for next month in San Francisco due to coronavirus-related risks.
The Mobile World Congress (MWC), the annual telecoms industry gathering in Barcelona, was also cancelled after a mass exodus by exhibitors on coronavirus fears.
The virus, which originated in the Chinese city of Wuhan, has killed more than 1,500 people so far and infected more than 66,000 people on the Chinese mainland.

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NAB sets up a global privacy office – Finance – Security – Storage- Tempemail – Blog – 10 minute

NAB has set up a global privacy office under chief data officer Glenda Crisp with a remit to safeguard customer data and champion privacy culture and data ethics within the bank.
The bank has secured the services of Cochlear’s chief privacy officer Stephen Bolinger, who has taken the role of general manager for data privacy and ethics within the global privacy office, reporting directly to Crisp.
It is now in the process of expanding staff numbers in the privacy office, though a spokesperson for the bank did not comment to iTnews on its planned size.
In a statement to iTnews, Crisp said the global privacy office had been set up for compliance reasons as well as to seed good data practice across the bank’s operations.
“Data has forever been a banking commodity but with rapid digitisation occurring across the global economy data privacy and protection has become hugely important,” Crisp said.
“To keep pace with digitisation and changing customer expectations, last year we established the global privacy office to help us safeguard any personal information we hold about customers or employees and to ensure we are meeting our regulatory obligations across many different global regions.
“We’re acutely aware of the trust customers place in us to keep their money and information safe and we’re investing in a number of different ways to help us achieve that.
“We want data experts throughout our organisation with the skills to critically assess new technology as it emerges, with an appreciation of both technical and ethical considerations of managing and storing data and keeping it safe for our customers.”
In addition to his new role at NAB, which he has held for about a month, Bolinger is currently the Australian country leader for the International Association of Privacy Professionals (IAPP).
He has also previously held a series of legal roles for Microsoft in the UK, EMEA and the US.
NAB is currently hiring for a consultant role in the global privacy office.
The job description indicates that the office may work with “internal and/or external clients”, suggesting it could have a role with NAB’s partners or even large customers.
It further suggested the office would be tasked with “identifying potential areas of privacy compliance vulnerability and risk and leading NAB teams to develop and implement corrective action plans for resolution of problematic issues”; and in reinforcing multi-layered defences aimed at reducing the risk of privacy incidents.
Crisp revealed last year that NAB is using Europe’s “high-water benchmark” on data privacy as guardrails for its own expanding analytics ambitions,  designing its data architecture to meet foreseeable higher standards of privacy in the domestic market.

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Google ordered to reveal identity of anonymous reviewer – Security- Tempemail – Blog – 10 minute

Google has been ordered to reveal the identity of an anonymous online reviewer known only as CBsm 23 to allow a Melbourne dentist to bring defamation action against the individual.
In a landmark ruling this week, the Federal Court declared that the web giant must hand over information that would help dental surgeon Mathew Kabbabe track down the mystery reviewer.
Kabbabe intends to bring a defamation action against the individual, who is alleged to have damaged his teeth whitening business by posting a negative review under the pseudonym CBsm 23.
CBsm 23 posted a review warning other patients to “STAY AWAY” from the business, claiming the experience there was “extremely awkward and uncomfortable”.
The user suggested the whitening procedure performed by the dentist “was not done properly”, a “complete waste of time” and that it seemed like the dentist “had never done this before”.
After trying – and failing – to get Google to take down the negative review, Kabbabe appealed for information about the identity of the user to be released, which the web giant declined.
“[We] do not have any means to investigate where and when the ID was created,” Google wrote to him in an email earlier this year.
On Wednesday, Justice Bernard Murphy deemed “it appropriate to accede to the application and to grant leave to Dr Kabbabe to serve the proceeding on Google in the USA”.
Under the order, Google will be required to provide subscriber information associated with CBsm 23’s account, including any names, phone numbers, IP addresses and location metadata.
“I consider that Google is likely to have or have had control of a document or thing that would help ascertain that description of the prospective respondent CBsm 23,” Justice Bernard Murphy said.
The order also applies to “any other Google accounts … which may have originated from the same IP address during a similar time period to when CBsm 23’s account was accessed to post the offending Google review”.

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Valentine credit data crackdown delivers kiss of death for online fraud – Finance – Networking – Security- Tempemail – Blog – 10 minute

It might be Valentine’s Day, but there will be no bouquets for debt collectors and online payment card fraudsters hoarding personal details, all thanks to a small but lethal tweak quietly delivered by the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner.
From today, credit information providers across Australia will be legally required to share information, between themselves, on when a consumer has asked for a ban on new credit applications – the ground floor door for online fraudsters establishing bogus credit cards and loans.
It’s a small, common sense and incremental change that flies in the face of all the fear and loathing peddled by cyber security vendors and will require no big spend on new detection systems, software and widely loathed PCI-DSS upgrades that can cost more than they save.
But it’s set to have a big effect, because it closes a yawning hole scammers have been exploiting for decades thanks to the opaque nature of consumer credit hygiene reporting used by banks, credit cards utilities and telcos.
The crackdown comes in the form of amendments to the Credit Reporting Code 2014 overseen by the OAIC and requires agencies that check your credit score to now ping each other to check if you’ve requested an active stop on fresh credit being issued in your name.
What that means is that if you’ve been a victim of identity fraud, or had your card or accounts compromised, crooks will find it a lot harder to just keep signing you up for new products that are then looted, leaving consumers to clean up the mess.
The OAIC’s small step is also important because once it bites, it’s likely to lessen the utility and dark market resale value of stolen Australian credentials used by fraudsters to impersonate legitimate customers.
Credit cards are the big prize for ID fraudsters, because once bogus accounts are set up across multiple issuing banks it can be between 50 days to three months before a sting is discovered, often when bills aren’t paid and are sent through to ‘collection’ – or the debt collectors.
And it’s those defaults that then wind up on a customer’s credit file, with the victim often only finding out when debt collectors come calling with threats of legal action, triggering a long and painful disputation process.
It’s a regulatory loophole the credit fraudsters have driven a truck through for years.
Amazingly, until now, there has been no formal requirement for credit bureaus to share consumer requests for new credit stops between themselves, resulting in identity theft victims being forced to go agency by agency to prevent their stolen credentials from being repeatedly misused.
We’ll get to the important and ignominious relationship between debt collectors and credit agencies in a moment, because there’s a track record of poor, often illegal behaviour and fraud victim exploitation
The challenge for ID fraud victims, especially in the age of digital onboarding and screen scraping, is that it’s not just loans or credit cards that get maxed-out by fraudsters. In the main, banks are vigilant to fraud and can and do act quickly upon detection.
The real consumer sting is for phone services, gas, electricity, cable television packages and now increasingly buy-now pay-later and merchant credit facilities (think tech, tools and tradies) that are used to milk out value.
The typologies are not that sophisticated, but they are effective. Sign-up for a two year mobile phone plan on a stolen card and and credentials, shift the phone.
Take the poor value (but easy to get) monthly instalment plan for a high-end gaming laptop. The list goes on.
Enter the debt collectors and the credit bureaus, who for the most part are joined at the hip.
Once the payments made using stolen credentials or instruments stop and the bills mount up (remember the 50-day interest free period), the fraud victim usually only finds out when they get a menacing phone call to pay.
As previously reported by iTnews, not all debt collectors are empathetic to the plight of fraud victims. 
They and can, and do, sometimes harass and threaten fraud victims to get the money allegedly owed, irrespective of the evidence, abusing their substantial powers and aggravating the harm to victims.
Queensland based debt collector Panthera is currently being prosecuted by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) for multiple instances of unconscionable conduct that all revolve around the alleged hounding of fraud victims to pay debts they did not incur.
The key allegation in the ACCC case is that Panthera broke the law because it used “undue harassment” stemming from “repeatedly pursuing payment from each of the consumers, and continuing to require onerous documentation from each consumer after they had informed Panthera of the basis on which they were not in fact liable for the debt being pursued”. 
In one of the incidents alleged by the ACCC in the Panthera case, the debt collector extracted $100 from a victim who had a Telstra Mobile Broadband account fraudulently taken out in their name under the pretext of a credit default being removed (it wasn’t, despite the money being paid).
Put that behaviour in the context of credit bureaus not telling each other when a stop on new credit has been requested and it’s not hard to see how criminals milk the same victim multiple times over.
“These changes make it easier for people to prevent identity and credit fraud. Consumers can ask credit reporting bodies to notify each other about the consumer’s request to place a ban period on credit applications, OAIC Commissioner Angelena Falk said back in December when the changes were flagged.
The amendments will also set strict timeframes “for processing corrections to consumer credit reports” as well as limiting what information can be kept on credit files.
The seamy end of the credit and debt collection industry will never smell of roses, but from today it will stink that little bit less.

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US accuses Huawei of stealing trade secrets, assisting Iran – Networking – Security – Telco/ISP- Tempemail – Blog – 10 minute

US prosecutors on Thursday accused Huawei of stealing trade secrets and helping Iran track protesters in its latest indictment against the Chinese company, escalating the US battle with the world’s largest telecommunications equipment maker.
In the indictment, which supersedes one unsealed last year in federal court in Brooklyn, New York, Huawei Technologies Co was charged with conspiring to steal trade secrets from six US technology companies and to violate a racketeering law typically used to combat organised crime.
It also contains new allegations about the company’s involvement in countries subject to sanctions. Among other accusations, it says Huawei installed surveillance equipment in Iran that was used to monitor, identify, and detain protesters during the 2009 anti-government demonstrations in Tehran.
The United States has been waging a campaign against Huawei, which it has warned could spy on customers for Beijing. Washington placed the company on a trade blacklist last year, citing national security concerns.
The indictment is “part of an attempt to irrevocably damage Huawei’s reputation and its business for reasons related to competition rather than law enforcement,” Huawei said in a statement.
It called the racketeering accusation “a contrived repackaging of a handful of civil allegations that are almost 20 years old.”
Huawei pleaded not guilty to the earlier indictment unsealed against the company in January 2019, which charged it with bank and wire fraud, violating sanctions against Iran, and obstructing justice.
Its chief financial officer Meng Wanzhou was arrested in December 2018 in Canada on charges in that indictment, causing an uproar in China and a chill in Canadian-Chinese relations. She has said she is innocent and is fighting extradition.
There are no new charges against Meng in the superseding indictment.
New charges
The new trade secret theft charges relate to internet router source code, cellular antenna technology, and robotics.
For example, beginning in 2000, Huawei and its subsidiary Futurewei Technologies Inc are accused of misappropriating operating system source code for internet routers, commands used to communicate with the routers, and operating system manuals, from a company in Northern California. Futurewei was added as a defendant in the latest indictment.
Huawei then sold their routers in the United States as lower cost versions of the US company’s products, the indictment says.
Although the US company is not identified, Cisco Systems sued Huawei in Texas in 2003 over copyright infringement related to its routers.
Huawei is also accused of recruiting employees from other companies, making efforts to get intellectual property from those companies, and using professors at research institutions to obtain technology.
“The indictment paints a damning portrait of an illegitimate organization that lacks any regard for the law,” US Senate Intelligence Committee chairman Richard Burr and vice chairman Mark Warner said in a joint statement.
The Republican and Democratic Senators called it “an important step in combating Huawei’s state-directed and criminal enterprise.”
The indictment also accuses Meng and Huawei of conspiring to defraud HSBC and other banks by misrepresenting Huawei’s relationship with a company that operated in Iran.
It references reporting by Reuters from seven years ago about Huawei’s ties to Skycom Tech Co Ltd, whichoffered to sell US origin goods to Iran, in violation of US law. It also mentions news reports in Reuters and the Wall Street Journal that claimed Huawei assisted the government of Iran in domestic surveillance. 
In addition to accusing Huawei of lying about its operations in Iran, the latest indictment says Huawei falsely represented to banks that it had no business in North Korea.
The US Commerce Department in May put Huawei on a trade blacklist that restricted US suppliers from selling parts and components to the company.
On Thursday, in some positive news for the company, the Commerce Department announced it was extending a temporary general licence for 45 days allowing US companies to continue doing some business with Huawei. The move is intended to maintain existing equipment and allow providers in rural communities more time to find alternatives to the company’s networks.
At the same time, the United States is weighing new regulations to stop more foreign shipments of products with US technology to Huawei.
And Washington has continued to pressure other countries to drop Huawei from their cellular networks over its claim the equipment could be used by Beijing for spying.

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Canada’s Telus to launch 5G network with Huawei gear – Financial Post – Security – Telco/ISP- Tempemail – Blog – 10 minute

Canadian telecom operator Telus Corp will use Huawei Technologies Co Ltd’s equipment to launch 5G network in the country later this year, the company’s chief financial officer, Doug French, told the Financial Post.
“We’re going to launch 5G with Huawei out of the gate,” Doug said in an interview with the Post following the Canadian telecom’s fourth-quarter earnings.
Canada is reviewing the security implications of 5G networks, including whether to allow Huawei to supply 5G network equipment.
Doug told the Post that the company will continue to work with the government to ensure all standards are met.
Telus on Thursday warned of higher costs related to setting up 5G wireless network if the Canadian government banned Huawei.
Meanwhile, US prosecutors on Thursday accused Huawei of stealing trade secrets and helping Iran track protesters in its latest indictment against the Chinese company.
Huawei CFO Meng Wanzhou is currently in Canadian custody awaiting a decision on extradition to the United States.
Telus did not offer an immediate comment, while Huawei said it does not comment on customers.

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