In a massive setback to Huawei Technologies and ZTE, the Japanese Government has issued guidelines managing key infrastructure across 14 sectors to refrain from obtaining communications equipment which may be vulnerable to security risks such as sensitive information leaks and system shutdowns, reports Nikkei Asian Review.
The Japanese government already had similar guidelines for ministries and government agencies, but now they’ve been extended to cover private sector enterprises as well.
Previously, the US discovered that sensitive military information was stolen from devices manufactured by Chinese companies like Huawei, and passed the National Defence Authorisation Act for fiscal 2019 to limit the use of such equipment by government agencies.
The Japanese government’s latest move stems from security risk warnings given by Washington about Chinese products. A new critical infrastructure investigation committee will be formed by Japan in January, led by Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga to explain the guidelines to industry representatives from entities like the Federation of Electric Power Companies of Japan, the Japan Water Works Association, the finance industry and others who might be particularly vulnerable.
Japanese companies have already been moving away from relying on Chinese manufacturers, with the SoftBank Group planning to discontinue use of Chinese equipment for its next-gen 5G base stations.