FCC Cracks Down on Chinese Companies Posing National Security Threat

September 21, 2022 by Madeline Hughes
FCC Cracks Down on Chinese Companies Posing National Security Threat

WASHINGTON — The Federal Communications Commission formally added Pacific Networks Corp. and its wholly owned subsidiary ComNet and China Unicom (Americas) Operations Limited to its list of companies whose telecom equipment and service pose a national security threat.

The commission along with national security agencies created the list that bars the U.S. government from granting licenses to or contracting with companies backed by the Chinese government and buying their products under the Secure and Trusted Communications Networks Act. As of Tuesday, 10 companies are on that list.

“Today we take another critical step to protect our communications networks from foreign national security threats,” said Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel in a statement

The commission had previously revoked the companies’ authorization to provide service earlier this year for China Unicom Americas in January and Pacific Networks in March.

“Earlier this year the FCC revoked China Unicom America’s and PacNet/ComNet’s authorities to provide service in the United States because of the national security risks they posed to communications in the United States. Now, working with our national security partners, we are taking additional action to close the door to these companies by adding them to the FCC’s Covered List,” she said. 

“This action demonstrates our whole-of-government effort to protect network security and privacy.”

This decision was made after multiple executive branch agencies — including the Department of Justice and the Department of Defense — said the companies pose “an unacceptable risk to the national security of the United States or the security and safety of United States persons,” according to recent filings with the commission. 

This latest move by the commission came the same day the companies were in the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals fighting the previous actions from the commission. The companies maintain they don’t pose national security concerns.

Judges Karen Lecraft Henderson, Gregory G. Katsas and Harry T. Edwards heard the arguments from the companies and the commission.

This isn’t the first time the covered list has been challenged in court. 

Huawei was the first company added to the list in 2021. It appealed its ban, however, the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals upheld the commission’s ban due to security issues.

“Assessing security risks to telecom networks falls in the FCC’s wheelhouse,” the judges wrote in a 60-page opinion. They rejected the company’s assertion the commission was some sort of “junior-varsity” agency on national security matters.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Madeline can be reached at [email protected] and @ByMaddieHughes

A+
a-

In The News

Health

Voting

Telecom

Americans Reporting Nationwide Cellular Outages From AT&T, Cricket Wireless and Others

A number of Americans are dealing with cellular outages on AT&T, Cricket Wireless, Verizon, T-Mobile and other service providers, according... Read More

A number of Americans are dealing with cellular outages on AT&T, Cricket Wireless, Verizon, T-Mobile and other service providers, according to data from Downdetector. AT&T had more than 73,000 outages around 9:30 a.m. ET, in locations including Houston, Atlanta and Chicago. The outages began at approximately... Read More

Google Ups Stakes in AI Race With Gemini, Technology Trained to Act More Like Humans

Google took its next leap in artificial intelligence Wednesday with the launch of project Gemini, an AI model trained to behave in... Read More

Google took its next leap in artificial intelligence Wednesday with the launch of project Gemini, an AI model trained to behave in human-like ways that's likely to intensify the debate about the technology’s potential promise and perils. The rollout will unfold in phases, with less sophisticated versions of... Read More

Broadcom Planning to Complete Deal for $69B Acquisition of VMWare After Regulators Give OK

SAN JOSE, California (AP) — Computer chip and software maker Broadcom has announced it has cleared all regulatory hurdles and... Read More

SAN JOSE, California (AP) — Computer chip and software maker Broadcom has announced it has cleared all regulatory hurdles and plans to complete its $69 billion acquisition of cloud technology company VMware on Wednesday. The company, based in San Jose, California, announced it planned to move... Read More

October 31, 2023
by Tom Ramstack
US Workforce Unprepared for AI, Technology Experts Tell Senate

WASHINGTON — President Joe Biden’s executive order Monday setting regulatory standards for artificial intelligence prompted witnesses at a Senate hearing... Read More

WASHINGTON — President Joe Biden’s executive order Monday setting regulatory standards for artificial intelligence prompted witnesses at a Senate hearing Tuesday to say it is only a first step in a process likely to transform American workplaces. “Artificial intelligence will not only disrupt lives, it will... Read More

September 27, 2023
by Dan McCue
FCC Chair Moves to Rekindle Net Neutrality Fight 

WASHINGTON — Federal Communications Commission Chair Jessica Rosenworcel on Tuesday kick-started the process to restore “net neutrality” regulations, declaring that... Read More

WASHINGTON — Federal Communications Commission Chair Jessica Rosenworcel on Tuesday kick-started the process to restore “net neutrality” regulations, declaring that “no one can have a fair shot at 21st century success” without “fast, open and fair” access to the internet. Rosenworcel’s remarks, delivered before reporters and... Read More

Google's Search Dominance Challenged in Biggest Antitrust Trial in Decades

WASHINGTON (AP) — Google has exploited its dominance of the internet search market to lock out competitors and smother innovation,... Read More

WASHINGTON (AP) — Google has exploited its dominance of the internet search market to lock out competitors and smother innovation, the Department of Justice charged Tuesday at the opening of the biggest U.S. antitrust trial in a quarter century. “This case is about the future of... Read More

News From The Well
scroll top