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Sabotage Of Different Kinds

In the light of the cyber espionage accusations in Bloomberg’s report of malicious Chinese chips in Apple, Amazon servers and Super Micro Computer motherboards, EITN is re-running an old 2014 piece that describes a different kind of sabotage between two key telco brands.

Happy reading!

*7th November 2014*

Thousands of miles away, somewhere on the continent of Africa, is a country characterised by war, ethnic cleansing and abysmally poor human rights. This country known as Sudan, ranks at 46th in the world in terms of number of Internet users….hey, it ranks even higher at 31st spot in terms of wireless broadband subscriptions.

Not bad won’t you say, for a country that had zilch Internet services before 1996?

This optimistic ‘”growth-despite-all-odds”’ market probably explains the reason behind the recent serious case of sabotage by a major Chinese telco equipment vendor against its other China-based competitor, as both fight for this Sudanese market.

In late October, Huawei was alleged to have forged documents on behalf of a South Sudan Minister of Information and Broadcasting, Michael Lueth, in attempt to postpone the funding for a digital TV project that was awarded to ZTE Corporation.

In the letter that was published online, the fake “Michael Lueth” had expressed that USD51 million was a “big problem” especially when there were certain other companies only asking for USD20 million for the project.  Presumably, Huawei would have swooped in during a new 2-week round of bidding and snatch the contract from ZTE’s grasp, with much lower pricing and free extra perks.

Digging deeper into the case, local news site Gurtong.net later followed up with reports that the Huawei Country CEO Tommy Hu, had gone to the ministry to deliver another bogus document – in the form of a Huawei letter of ‘apology’ laced with threats, that if ever, the forged Michael Lueth document was reproduced or disseminated, there would be legal implications against the ministry.

Huawei also put it on official record that the crime perpetrator, Sullivan Chen, had acted on his own accord without acknowledgement from Huawei management, and that he is currently under internal investigation.

However, much has gone around the grapevine that Huawei is just trying to cover up its own tracks because a leopard hardly changes its spots – this Chinese telco has been known to practice “strategically malicious behaviour” in the pursuit of coveted telco projects.

IT BYTES BACK! says: We know the telecommunications industry is a cutthroat, dog-eat-dog world. But if one keeps getting one’s self caught with pants down, and with irrefutable proof..? If Is this a case of the employees driven to bad behaviour because of pressure by a tough sales climate, that’s just too bad – Keep a tighter leash on as there are one too many strikes against the company already!



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