According to the Chinese tech company Huawei, which has a contract with TDC to build the 5G mobile phone communications network in Denmark, there is absolutely no foundation for the idea that the company is a security threat.
Allegations of industrial espionage, including recent arrests in Poland and Canada, have caused a number of Danish politicians to get cold feet about the deal.
However, in a written answer to TV2, Huawei attempted to strike a reassuring note.
On the side of the customer
Asked directly whether the Chinese government or other parties will be able to access data on Danes, the company answered that “Huawei is an independent organisation, and in matters of cyber security and the protection of privacy we are legally obliged to take the side of the customer.”
It added that “we would never cause any damage either to nations or persons.”
The company further emphasised that contrary to claims in the international media the Chinese Foreign Ministry denies the existence of any law forcing Chinese companies to fall into line with the wishes of Chinese intelligence services.
It is precisely this fear that has led to countries such as Australia, New Zealand and the US dropping Huawei from similar projects.
Nothing to do with us
Regarding the Chinese citizen arrested and charged with espionage in Poland, Huawei stated that the man has been sacked and that his activities bore no relation to the company.
“Here at Huawei we’ve never used our equipment to access any national data, business secrets or private user information. We would never support or tolerate this type of activity and we would never take part in it at the prompting of any third party.”
Whether this will be enough to allay fears remains to be seen. Among other prominent international intelligence bodies, the UK’s National Cyber Security Centre believes otherwise.