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posted by martyb on Saturday February 15 2020, @10:07AM   Printer-friendly
from the don't-spy-like-I-do dept.

The US is charging Huawei with racketeering

Ratcheting up its pressure campaign against Huawei and its affiliates, the Department of Justice and the FBI announced today that it has brought 16 charges against Huawei in a sprawling case with major geopolitical implications (you can read the full 56-page indictment here).

Huawei is being charged with conspiracy to violate the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO) statute. The DoJ alleges that Huawei and a number of its affiliates used confidential agreements with American companies over the past two decades to access the trade secrets of those companies, only to then misappropriate that intellectual property and use it to fund Huawei's business.

An example of this activity is provided in the indictment. Described as "Company 1," Huawei is alleged to have stolen source code for Company 1's routers, which it then used in its own products.

[...] Huawei is also alleged to have engaged in more simple forms of industrial espionage. While at a trade show in Chicago, a Huawei-affiliated engineer "... was discovered in the middle of the night after the show had closed for the day in the booth of a technology company ... removing the cover from a networking device and taking photographs of the circuitry inside. Individual-3 wore a badge listing his employer as 'Weihua,'

[...] Together, the indictment lists multiple examples of Huawei's alleged conspiracy to pilfer U.S. intellectual property.

It's a good thing that the United States would never do 'bad things' or act in a manner like this.


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  • (Score: 2, Flamebait) by legont on Saturday February 15 2020, @05:05PM (10 children)

    by legont (4179) on Saturday February 15 2020, @05:05PM (#958545)

    This was always allowed by the US and not only for China. For example, we had no problem with Soviets copying IBM-360. The reason was that copying takes time and effort away from development and the thief is always somewhat behind, while the real creator takes the next step.
    What happened now is that China went ahead with creating new and better technology and it does it faster than the US. This is the game changer that Trump is trying to stop; probably too late though. Interestingly enough, India, which supposedly has better position, can't do it. I guess Chinees political system is more progress friendly.

    --
    "Wealth is the relentless enemy of understanding" - John Kenneth Galbraith.
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  • (Score: 2) by Runaway1956 on Saturday February 15 2020, @06:57PM (7 children)

    by Runaway1956 (2926) Subscriber Badge on Saturday February 15 2020, @06:57PM (#958572) Homepage Journal

    China went ahead with creating new and better technology and it does it faster than the US.

    I have doubts about that. They are most definitely doing it cheaper, but new and better? I don't think they are there yet, actually. Give it another ten to twenty years, and they'll be there. Right now, they are beginning to equal what the US is capable of.

    We seem to be losing capability, while China gains. Ten years? They should be about equal to us across the board. Twenty years? They'll probably pull ahead, wit the newer and better.

    I know that when we get a mold in from China, tooling has to do a helluva lot of work on the mold before we can shoot good parts with it. The primary problem is, China doesn't use the same steel that the US or Europe, or even South America uses. You get some stupid statement that "This steel equivalent to " which ever steel you had specified. In our case, we expect a mold to warp so much, when it heats and cools. The cheap replacement "equivalent" warps about five times as much, and it's near impossible to machine it so that parts are within specs. Warp is warp, and if you manage to machine it away, it's a lot of luck, a lot of skill, and a blessing from the Flying Spaghetti Monster or some such.

    --
    Make an actual interesting, germane, and relevant point and you may get away with Flamebait - 'Zumi
    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday February 15 2020, @07:32PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Saturday February 15 2020, @07:32PM (#958586)

      yes, cheap metal is a big way they cheat on everything they sell. it's going to be interesting if there's ever a war and all of america's chinese made stuff falls apart.

    • (Score: 2) by legont on Sunday February 16 2020, @02:24AM (2 children)

      by legont (4179) on Sunday February 16 2020, @02:24AM (#958662)

      They are most definitely doing it cheaper, but new and better?

      Off cource China is not doing better everywhere - she just started. China have few advantage areas at the moment, but one of them is G5 where Huavei beat everybody by at least 2 years, possibly by 3 to 5. If the whole world adopts China mobile tech, the US will lose it's long enjoyed ability to spy on everybody. One can't underestimate the consequences.
      There are and will be others.

      --
      "Wealth is the relentless enemy of understanding" - John Kenneth Galbraith.
    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday February 16 2020, @08:55AM (2 children)

      by Anonymous Coward on Sunday February 16 2020, @08:55AM (#958744)

      There's lots of lying and cheating in China. But I doubt meeting your mold requirements is beyond China tech and capabilities.

      China likely has difficulty with certain jet engine or rocket parts: https://www.inkstonenews.com/tech/chinese-spy-accused-trying-steal-us-trade-secrets/article/2168111 [inkstonenews.com]
      https://www.scmp.com/news/china/society/article/2127796/china-talks-sale-jet-engine-technology-germany [scmp.com]

      But given that Apple etc can successfully get precision stuff made in China I'm pretty sure there are people and factories in China who can produce the molds you want to the quality you want and maybe even still at a significantly cheaper price than the USA. The issue is finding them :). And of course closing your eyes to the substandard working conditions for the workers.

      • (Score: 2) by Runaway1956 on Sunday February 16 2020, @09:59AM (1 child)

        by Runaway1956 (2926) Subscriber Badge on Sunday February 16 2020, @09:59AM (#958748) Homepage Journal

        Perhaps your assessment is accurate. Someone in China has the ability to manufacture the molds we need, to the standards we want. We're just dealing with the wrong suppliers.

        Then again, there IS a lag between the time China's IP thieves acquire trade secrets and whatnot, and the time that those secrets are implemented. There is another lag between implementation, and successful implementation.

        Someone, somewhere, probably has some kind of a formula to figure out what those lag times are. I basically pulled my twenty years out of thin air. I can partly justify my twenty years, with the fact that it takes time for a concept to roll from our engineers, through corporate, then back out to us, in the manufacturing end of things. I'm talking months, to years, inside of a cooperative environment, with no outside, unwelcome influences. (Unless of course, we consider corporate headquarters to be hostile. ;^) )

        --
        Make an actual interesting, germane, and relevant point and you may get away with Flamebait - 'Zumi
        • (Score: 2) by legont on Monday February 17 2020, @04:45AM

          by legont (4179) on Monday February 17 2020, @04:45AM (#959030)

          Lets not forget that Steve Jobs tried to manufacture in the US, twice; and failed both times. It was not only a question of price - he simply was not able to do it. The was no - and perhaps is no - technology that would allow him to build Mac and iPhone here.
          I do believe though that if he were forced to manufacture in the US, he would come up with required automation. It would be way more difficult and longer process, but everybody would win eventually.

          --
          "Wealth is the relentless enemy of understanding" - John Kenneth Galbraith.
  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday February 16 2020, @01:35PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday February 16 2020, @01:35PM (#958777)

    India can do it, but it is more expensive because China has complete control over its population and hence the market. India has a democratic market (although largely domestic).

    If anyone is not aware of macroeconomic terminology, a non-free market is has pricing issues. The Chinese government controls it and hence is in a unique position to provide the cheapest labor.

  • (Score: 2) by Rupert Pupnick on Sunday February 16 2020, @06:18PM

    by Rupert Pupnick (7277) on Sunday February 16 2020, @06:18PM (#958863) Journal

    I disagree with most of what you said with one exception: giving China the opportunity to copy American tech can in many cases deflect them from trying to leapfrog US R&D. One of the main problems with this approach is that with the end of Moore’s Law, the US technological lead in consumer and industrial electronic technology has narrowed considerably.

    I personally witnessed the “let them copy” approach at a company that made high speed O/E transducers in the telecom sector. The product line mainly consisted of pluggable modules with a proprietary DSP ASIC inside. When the next generation was deployed, the old ASIC was sold to Chinese competitors in the module space. Management was betting that they could make some extra money on ASICs without the competition catching up in the module market. This probably did boost the bottom line at the expense of giving up old IP.