France to tighten 5G security

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Attendees wait in line for a 5G exhibition at the Qualcomm booth during CES 2019 consumer electronics show. AFP

France will soon make proposals to reinforce the security of mobile telephone networks, Economy Minister Bruno Le Maire said Wednesday after the US stepped up pressure on Europe to block China’s Huawei from building 5G networks.

“The role of the nation is to protect the economic interests of the country, 5G could lead us to taking strong decisions in this area,” Le Maire said on the France 2 television network.

Several Western nations have already barred China’s Huawei from participating in contracts to deploy fifth-generation, or 5G, networks, citing fears Beijing could gain access to sensitive communications and critical infrastructure.

The United States, which considers the matter urgent as European Union countries prepare to roll out 5G networks that will bring near-instantaneous connectivity, vast data capacity and futuristic technologies, said Tuesday it would meet with its European partners this week to warn against Chinese suppliers.

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