Feeds

Huawei reaches out to critical German hacker over router flaws

'Sometimes one needs a quick slap in the chops'

SANS - Survey on application security programs

Huawei’s efforts to improve its information security credentials have appeared to receive a boost after CISO John Suffolk revealed the Chinese tech giant is engaging with a researcher who exposed flaws in some of its routers.

Former UK government CIO Suffolk told Reuters at a security summit in New Delhi that he's sending a team of underlings to meet German researcher Felix Lindner, who has been an outspoken critic of Huawei in the past.

"We've very much taken on board Felix's views and you'll see over the coming period we've got a whole host of significant operations to deal with these issues," Suffolk told the newswire.

“We like these comments, although sometimes you think to yourself that's a bit of a slap in the face.”

Lindner and Gregor Kopf of Berlin-based Recurity Labs revealed research at Defcon in August revealing major coding errors which could allow hackers to remotely take control of Huawei’s AR18 and AR28 router products.

They claimed the products, which address the home office (AR18) and mid-sized enterprise (AR28) markets, contained 1990s style code and no OS hardening, leaving them open to “nineties style exploitation”.

They also complained that it had been difficult to responsibly disclose the flaws, claiming Huawei has no obvious “externally visible product security group”.

Although the Chinese tech giant at the time responded fairly unequivocally, by pointing all such cases towards its Network Security Incident Response Team (NSIRT), Suffolk now seems to be striking a more conciliatory tone in an attempt to effect lasting improvements in product design.

“Sometimes you need a bit of a slap in the face to step back, not be emotive in your response, and say what do I systematically need to change so over time any these issues begin to reduce?" he told Reuters.

"I can fix the Felix issue in a few lines of code. But I'm interested in systemic change within Huawei."

It remains to be seen whether improving the security and reliability of its products will convince governments such as the US and Australia that Huawei doesn’t pose a national security risk, however.

The US House of Representatives Intelligence Committee report came out against Huawei despite releasing no evidence to prove its products contained deliberate backdoors. ®

3 Big data security analytics techniques

More from The Register

next story
This time it's 'Personal': new Office 365 sub covers just two devices
Redmond also brings Office into Google's back yard
Kingston DataTraveler MicroDuo: Turn your phone into a 72GB beast
USB-usiness in the front, micro-USB party in the back
IBM rides nightmarish hardware landscape on OpenPOWER Consortium raft
Google mulls 'third-generation of warehouse-scale computing' on Big Blue's open chips
It's GOOD to get RAIN on your upgrade parade: Crucial M550 1TB SSD
Performance tweaks and power savings – what's not to like?
AMD's 'Seattle' 64-bit ARM server chips now sampling, set to launch in late 2014
But they won't appear in SeaMicro Fabric Compute Systems anytime soon
prev story

Whitepapers

Securing web applications made simple and scalable
In this whitepaper learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Mainstay ROI - Does application security pay?
In this whitepaper learn how you and your enterprise might benefit from better software security.
Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.