Exclusive: Until the end of June, you can decide who can build 5G at home

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An important deadline is approaching in a coordinated process of action at EU level, which primarily identifies security challenges associated with the use of 5G mobile networks and leaves room for Member States to minimize them. In connection with the adoption and implementation of the measures of the non-binding package of proposals issued to EU member states in January following a cyber security risk analysis, member states had to declare by 30 April, but according to CountingNews, this deadline is 15 May and then the last. currently amended to 30 June. The stakes are high, as it can now be decided at Member State level which suppliers each nation trusts so much as to allow them to participate in the construction of any critical infrastructure, most notably mobile networks.


The non-binding toolbox was preceded last autumn by an EU-wide risk assessment study compiled on the initiative of the Commission by the Commission and the European Union Cyber ​​Security Agency on the basis of data sent by the competent authorities of the Member States (in Hungary the National Cyber ​​Defense Institute). Agency (ENISA). The aim of the report was to identify the main (national) security risks arising from the operation of 5G networks, which will be followed by the development of a risk mitigation package at EU level.

the country's first 5G station next to the zalazone automotive test track under construction (photo: mti)

According to the package, all Member States should take steps to address identified or potential future cyber security threats. respond to and prevent in an appropriate and timely manner. Member States should, if necessary, provide the specialized services and authorities with new powers to achieve the desired objective (s) by providing the appropriate legal framework. These include:

  • It may be necessary to tighten security requirements for mobile operators (restrict access, operation or outsourcing of certain functions),
  • Minimize the role of high-risk suppliers and, if necessary, completely limit them in critical infrastructures. [19659008] Supporting and prescribing a multi-vendor strategy for operators

The package, like last autumn's ENISA study, does not specify which supplier is considered “risky”, but it is clear from diplomatic language. that Chinese manufacturers, especially Huawei, can expect its operation and presence in Europe to be affected in some way by the ongoing policy process.

Large infrastructure suppliers in Hungary Both Huawei and Ericsson have a serious stake in the decision of the Hungarian government, as the two companies are present at key points in the Hungarian telecommunications infrastructure. Thus, Huawei's primary supplier is a key partner in Vodafone Hungary's mobile network segment and in Magyar Telekom's fixed line business, while Ericsson is Magyar Telekom's mobile network supplier. The two companies are both trying to gain the government's favor, Ericsson has brought serious research and development projects to Hungary and supported Hungarian higher education with billions so far, and Huawei has established Europe's largest manufacturing and logistics base in Hungary years ago.

RISK MANAGEMENT [19659013] In part, the EU toolbox was the subject of an interview published by the World Economy in its Wednesday issue. Gábor Éry, CEO of Ericsson Hungary, told the paper, emphasizing the role of trust:

The complexity of 5G networks is so great that their protection cannot be ensured by purely technological rules, and trust in the network is extremely important. Member States should also decide which suppliers are considered reliable and which are high risk. An example of the latter is if the company's parent company operates in a country with a non-democratic political system, or if the way certain data is transferred is in conflict with European law.

the company manager told the World Economy. Éry added that in the future, it will no longer be enough to simply protect core networks, as some of them will be installed for companies (industry players) and the software will no longer be able to be updated only annually. Due to the frequent changes in the code, various official audits are not a solution either, so if they do not trust the system builder, the vendor, the whole system cannot be considered secure. ”

We asked the Chinese about the expected effects of the toolbox Huawei Technologies, whose role in Hungary so far this year has been praised by several ministers this year, and has predicted that the Hungarian government does not want to discriminate against any technology supplier now or later solely on the basis of the country of origin.

The EU 5G riskbox toolbox to be submitted by member states today is about the comprehensive security of next generation mobile telecommunications networks. The area and responsibilities are multi-stakeholder, co-located with governments, regulators, suppliers, telecom network operators and end-users, so our cooperation and joint action is essential to maintain and even enhance cyber security. Technological guarantees must be created for this. The toolbox can help with this.

Mariann Gecse, director of government relations and communications at Huawei Technologies, told CountingNews. Gecse added that Huawei expects Hungary to maintain the openness of its telecommunications market environment, its level playing field, all market participants complying with relevant international and Hungarian legislation and its views on the manageability of cybersecurity by technological means in today's material to be submitted to the EU. [19659019] window.fbAsyncInit = function () {
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