By Biodun Busari
The United States has said it will ban the sales of communications equipment manufactured by Chinese companies Huawei and ZTE.
It also restricted the use of some China-made video surveillance systems, citing an “unacceptable risk” to national security, according to BBC on Saturday.
The US five-member Federal Communications Commission said on Friday it has unanimously resolved to adopt new rules that will block the importation or sale of certain technology products that pose security risks to US critical infrastructure.
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The measure was the latest in the years-long escalation of US restrictions on Chinese technology that began with President Donald Trump and has continued under President Joe Biden’s administration.
“The FCC is committed to protecting our national security by ensuring that untrustworthy communications equipment is not authorized for use within our borders, and we are continuing that work here,” said FCC Chair Jessica Rosenworcel said in a statement.
The FCC’s order was applicable to future authorisations of equipment, though the agency leaves open the possibility it could revoke previous approvals.
“Our unanimous decision represents the first time in FCC history that we have voted to prohibit the authorisation of new equipment based on national security concerns,” tweeted Brendan Carr, a Republican FCC commissioner.
Carr added that as “a result of our order, no new Huawei or ZTE equipment can be approved. And no new Dahua, Hikvision, or Hytera gear can be approved unless they assure the FCC that their gear won’t be used for public safety, security of government facilities, and other national security purposes.”
Hikvision said in a statement that its video products “present no security threat” to the U.S. but the FCC’s decision “will do a great deal to make it more harmful and more expensive for US small businesses, local authorities, school districts, and individual consumers to protect themselves, their homes, businesses and property.”