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Executive Branch Agencies Urge FCC to Terminate China Telecom’s Authorizations

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The departments of Justice, Defense, Homeland Security and other agencies within the executive branch have called on the Federal Communications Commission to cancel the authorization of China Telecom to offer telecommunications services in the U.S.

“The security of our government and professional communications, as well as of our most private data, depends on our use of trusted partners from nations that share our values and our aspirations for humanity,” said John Demers, assistant attorney general for national security. “Today’s action is but our next step in ensuring the integrity of America’s telecommunications systems.”

The recommendation was based on China Telecom’s inaccurate statements to U.S. authorities concerning its U.S. records storage site, concerns that the company is vulnerable to the Chinese government’s influence and control and changing national security environment since 2007, DOJ said Thursday.

DOJ led the evaluation of China Telecom’s authorizations and made the recommendation based on the company’s failure to comply with the terms of a particular agreement with the department and other law enforcement and national security risks linked to the firm.