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Turnbull says he was fully briefed on Huawei

Hamish Barwick | Nov. 4, 2013
Australia's Communications Minister responds to media reports that he did not receive a security briefing about the vendor

Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull.

Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull has denied media reports that he did not receive a security briefing about Chinese telecommunications vendor Huawei.

Huawei was banned by the previous Labor government from participating in the National Broadband Network (NBN) last year because of national security concerns.

ABC News reported this week that Turnbull had promised to review the Huawei ban and suggested the company could provide equipment to the NBN project.

Meanwhile, The Australian reported that Turnbull did not receive a briefing from security agencies about Huawei.

In a statement, Turnbull said this was not correct and that he had taken "great care" to understand as much he could about cyber security issues, both in relation to companies and the technologies involved.

"As a consequence I have had regular technical briefings and discussions on these matters with our security agencies both before and after the election," he said.

"Cyber security is a critical matter -- in some respects our greatest vulnerability -- and a key line of defence is to raise the level of informed awareness in the community, in business, in government and in every industry, not simply telecommunications."

The federal government announced this week that it will continue the ban on Huawei supplying networking equipment for the NBN, saying no decision has been made to change the existing policy introduced by Labor.



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