Poland may vary security demands for different parts of 5G: minister

WARSAW (Reuters) - Poland might impose stricter security demands for core elements of its future 5G network than for other areas of the system, the digital minister said, a move that could give telecom operators more choice over suppliers than states with more sweeping rules.

FILE PHOTO: Huawei's first global flagship store is pictured in Shenzhen, Guangdong province, China October 30, 2019. REUTERS/Aly Song/File Photo

Poland, like other nations, has been working on regulations to guarantee the security of 5G network in the wake of an international row over whether equipment made by major Chinese supplier Huawei poses a security threat.

The United States, a member of NATO like Poland, has said Huawei’s gear could be used for spying by China’s government. Huawei denies this and says its equipment does not pose a security risk.

“Security of end devices is something different than security of the core of the network,” Digital Minister Marek Zagorski told Reuters, adding that different parts of the system could have different security requirements.

“The further from this strategic element, which is the core of the network, the less restrictive these requirements may be,” he added.

Several international telecom operators continue to work with Huawei despite U.S. pressure, saying banning the firm’s gear could delay 5G rollout and raise costs. But some operators have been curbing use of Huawei technology.

New 5G networks will boost data transfer speeds and will support new technologies, such as autonomous driving.

Zagorski said Poland had sent the European Commission its proposals regarding how to mitigate risks.

He said Poland’s aim was “to guarantee transmission security. It is about a diversification of equipment suppliers, roaming between operators. These are basic requirements.”

Zagorski said a draft bill on the security issue was expected to be presented to parliament at the start of 2020 and work on the bill was expected to be completed by the end of February.

Reporting by Anna Koper; Editing by Edmund Blair