Huawei suspended from independent global cybersecurity forum
Another chapter of the soap opera Huawei vs. USA appeared - and it has worldwide proportions. According to the Wall Street Journal, the Chinese manufacturer has been suspended from the Times of Security and Incident Response Forum (“FIRST”), an independent initiative to share immediate information in the event of major system intrusions. security attacks, hacker attacks and other system failures on a global basis. Think of it as an outpatient emergency service, only for cybersecurity.
The reason, although not explicitly described in the newspaper report, is the same as why US President Donald Trump issued an executive order prohibiting US companies from doing business or trading with Huawei: the suspicion of that the company is being used by the Chinese government as a corporate espionage vector against technology multinationals.
This could lead to more severe problems for Huawei, which, on suspension, loses access to early information from major hacks and global attacks. For the end user, this could translate, for example, into a longer delay in launching security bug fix packs on smartphones and other company devices. An automated sharing platform - to which Huawei had access - will also be cut from the company.
It's worth mentioning: Two other prominent FIRST members are the United States Department of Defense and the United Kingdom National Cybersecurity Center.
The recommendation for the suspension came voluntarily from the Forum's legal team, which argued that some of the material shared between the members of the entity could fall into the categories provided for in the so-called "Huawei ban", by which the executive order signed by Trump.
According to a FIRST spokesman: "After extensive consultation and review of processes, we regret to report that we have found ourselves in a position where we had to suspend Huawei membership [next to the forum]."