U.S. govt considers 'nationalising' 5G network for security reasons

Nellie Chapman
January 30, 2018

It seems that the Trump administration can't get its story straight, as some officials say the memo and slides are outdated, while another confirmed that they are looking at nationalizing some of the 5G network.

"We think the worldwide community should strengthen dialogues and cooperation to face up to cyber threats and maintain cyber peace and security based on mutual respect and trust", she said.

During 2012, ZTE Corp. and Huawei were subjects of an investigation by USA regulators into whether the equipment they made provided an opportunity for espionage by a foreign state and threatened critical infrastructure in the U.S. However, the unnamed official then demonstrates an alarming lack of understanding of telecoms and 5G when he or she then tells Reuters: "We want to build a network so the Chinese can't listen to your calls".

The document also said that a strong 5G network is needed in order to create a secure pathway for emerging technologies like self-driving cars and virtual reality - and to combat Chinese threats to America's economic and cyber security.

The chairman of the Federal Communications Commission has come out against the Trump administration's desire to nationalize a secure 5G network.

The US federal government is exploring the idea of building its own 5G wireless network infrastructure, according to documents obtained by Axios. The 5G nationalization proposal, reportedly produced by a senior National Security Council official and shared with senior officials at other federal agencies, has garnered little support but has drawn criticism from many corners. The remaining part will be open for private wireless providers to establish their own networks.

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"I oppose any proposal for the federal government to build and operate a nationwide 5G network", said Pai in a statement.

The problem with the government's idea, however, is that majority of the mobile network carriers have already begun building and, in some cases, testing 5G capabilities.

The documents reviewed by Axios suggested that the US must have a centralized 5G network spanning the country within the next three years. AT&T has said that it expects to launch a mobile 5G service in 12 US locations later this year.

Responding to the report about the memo AT&T said that private sector work was well under way and testing has gone to field trials. AT & T is all set to launch 5G service in 12 US locations in the coming months. In early January, US lawmakers pressured AT&T to renege on deals with Huawei to launch the Huawei Mate 10 Pro and collaborate on upcoming 5G networking standards.

A 5G network is expected to offer users with relatively more capacity, faster speeds along with shorter response times that could be used significantly for new technologies in the coming future in diverse industries and fields.

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