After Facebook's massive personal information scandal, tech users across the globe have become more skeptical than even when it comes to innocent looking technology. From data breaches to using customer information to sell to other companies, it was made clear in 2018 that not all technology is necessarily good.
Unfortunately, the latest tech company to come under experts' radar is quite a popular one that has been enlisted by not only Canadian universities but also cell phone companies. Meaning the country has some serious ties to a company that's recently been deemed by other allies as a security threat.
The company in question is called Huawei, and while they were newly introduced into North America a few years back, they have made major moves since then to establish their presence. Most recently partnering with universities across Canada and Telus in order to help develop more 5G networks in Canada.
The concept sounds innocent but according to The Weekend Australian, you should be skeptical of Huawei's motives. The Australian newspaper detailed that "secret intelligence reports show Huawei officials were pressured at some point in the past two years to provide password and network details to infiltrate a foreign system."
While it still remains unclear where that pressure was coming from, experts in Canada aren't the only ones warning companies to stay away from Huawei. In fact, several countries such as Australia and America are concerned the tech company is a high-risk security threat.
As of right now, Huawei's agreements with Canadian companies and universities are based on millions of dollars worth of research grants as well as the rights to intellectual property and agreements with large Canadian telecommunications companies in most cases. On top of that, with Huawei gaining the advantage of selling their product at a lower rate than Western competitors, Christopher Parsons, a Toronto cybersecurity expert, told the Toronto Star "there are very good reasons for [concern]."
Currently, it's unclear whether the Canadian government will be stepping in, or if any Canadian universities or companies will be looking into the situation. Though if you are someone who's been paranoid about data breaches and tech in general, you may want to think twice before using a Huawei product. Including the companies and universities that are currently partnering with the company, which as of now include Telus, the University of Waterloo and Nipissing University.