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Taiwan, US announce joint 5G security declaration

ROC Central News Agency

08/26/2020 09:06 PM

Taipei, Aug. 26 (CNA) Taiwan and the United States are working closely to raise awareness globally about risks related to 5G networks and will continue to work with like-minded partners to develop 5G guidelines and best practices, according to a joint declaration on 5G security released by the two countries in Taipei Wednesday.

According to the declaration, both Taiwan and the U.S. recognize the Prague Proposals drafted in May 2019, which emphasize the need to develop, deploy, and commercialize 5G networks based on a foundation of free and fair competition, transparency, and the rule of law.

"We believe that all stakeholders have a shared responsibility to undertake a careful, balanced evaluation of 5G hardware and software suppliers and supply chains to promote a secure and resilient 5G architecture," the declaration said.

"Towards this end, the United States and Taiwan are working closely to help raise awareness globally about the risks to 5G networks through the Global Cooperation and Training Framework, and look forward to continuing to work with like-minded partners to develop appropriate 5G standards, guidelines, and best practices, "it added.

The declaration concluded by pointing out that it is "critical to transition from untrusted network hardware and software suppliers in existing networks to trusted ones through regular lifecycle replacements," without identifying whether one of the so-called untrusted suppliers is Chinese telecom giant Huawei.

"Such efforts will not only improve our respective security, but also provide opportunities for private sector innovators to succeed under free and fair competition and benefit our respective digital economies,"it concluded.

Speaking during a 5G policy forum where the declaration was made public, Foreign Minister Joseph Wu (吳釗燮) said related authorities in Taiwan and the U.S. have been working closely over the past year to come up with an information security framework, and the declaration is expected to "institutionalize" future Taiwan-US collaboration in this area.

Wu said President Tsai Ing-wen's (蔡英文) inaugural speech in May prioritized developing a cybersecurity industry that can integrate with 5G, digital transformation and an industrial chain that can protect the country, as one of the six core strategic industries in her second term.

The minister also noted that all five telecom service providers in Taiwan have now been listed as "Clean 5G" networks by the U.S., and Taiwan has confidence it will be a perfect partner for countries around the world in information security cooperation.

Meanwhile, American Institute in Taiwan (AIT) Director Brent Christensen, said in his address that the U.S. is proud to stand with Taiwan, "a truly reliable partner, to publicly proclaim our shared values and close cooperation on 5G Security."

He said the consequences of 5G deployment choices made now by governments and by telecom operators will be felt for years to come.

"Countries need to be able to trust the 5G equipment and software companies and know that they will not threaten their national security, privacy, intellectual property, or human rights,"he continued.

"Trust cannot exist where telecom vendors are subject to authoritative governments like the People's Republic of China, which lacks an independent judiciary or the rule of law, and whose limited privacy protections result in security vulnerabilities,"he pointed out.

The AIT official said the U.S. is happy to see Taiwan as a member of its 5G Clean Path Initiative.

"Taiwan and the U.S. are joined by other 'clean' partners with the aim of keeping technology systems clean and free of untrusted vendors to promote the security of nations by protecting the sensitive data of citizens and companies from authoritarian governments," he noted.

The joint declaration was made under the name of AIT and Taipei Economic and Cultural Representative Office in the U.S., which represent the country's respective interests in Taipei and Washington in the absence of official diplomatic ties.

(By Chen Yun-yu and Joseph Yeh)


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