Huawei Challenges US Restrictions (Again)

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Huawei today announced that it's filed a petition with the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit to protest a Federal Communications Commission (FCC) order that prohibits carriers from using the Universal Service Fund federal subsidiary to buy Huawei equipment.

The FCC issued the order on November 22 purportedly because it believes that allowing carriers to use Huawei equipment in rural areas throughout the U.S. represents a national security risk. The idea was that preventing carriers from using the Universal Service Fund to buy Huawei equipment would lead them to seek alternative solutions that wouldn't put the country at risk of foreign influence.

Huawei's argument is that the FCC order "fails to offer Huawei required due process protections in labeling Huawei as a national security threat. Huawei believes that the FCC also fails to substantiate its arbitrary findings with evidence or sound reasoning or analysis, in violation of the U.S. Constitution, the Administrative Procedure Act and other laws." 

In addition, the vendor claims the FCC didn't provide evidence prove Huawei a security threat. 

The FCC has not acknowledged the filing.

Of course, the U.S. has already made similar arguments against Huawei, with U.S. President Donald Trump telling federal agencies to stop buying equipment form Huawei and ZTE, both of which are based in China, last year. They were made again when the U.S. Department of Commerce added Huawei to the Entity List -- which prevents U.S. companies from doing business with it -- back in May. Such arguments have been repeated several times since, too.

All of which is to say this isn't the first time the U.S. government has restricted Huawei's ability to do business in the U.S. Nor is it the first time Huawei's complained about the legality of these attempts. In March, Huawei said that banning federal agencies from purchasing its products was unconstitutional. Now, it's back in the courts in an effort to continue operating in rural areas in the States.

According to Huawei, this most recent restriction "is threatening the improving connectivity in rural America, which depends on Huawei equipment because other vendors were not willing to do business" in these locations. You can find a a transcript of Huawei's press conference here

Nathaniel Mott
Freelance News & Features Writer

Nathaniel Mott is a freelance news and features writer for Tom's Hardware US, covering breaking news, security, and the silliest aspects of the tech industry.