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Telecom Daily

Welcome to Faulkner's Telecom Daily. We publish Monday through Friday, updating top stories as events warrant.

Wednesday, January 17... 

US Lawmakers Pressuring AT&T to Cut All Ties with Huawei
A new report from Reuters suggests that the US government's influence on AT&T's shrinking relationship with Chinese device maker Huawei may go much deeper than initially realized. Following the cancellation of AT&T's plan to begin selling Huawei-branded smartphones to US customers, reports emerged that the last-minute breakup was the result of pressure from US lawmakers that were fearful of a perceived security threat posed by Huawei's entry into the US market. This is due to widespread belief among the US intelligence community that Huawei has strong ties to the Chinese government and its intelligence networks. Now, Reuters is claiming that legislators are also leaning on AT&T to end its collaboration with Huawei on the development of 5G standards for the same security-focused reasons. Congress has reportedly even gone so far as to introduce a bill that would block any government agency from working directly with Huawei over these concerns. While the legislation would have no effect on AT&T, Reuters claims that the withdrawal of lucrative government contracts is being used as leverage to get AT&T to comply with the federal government's wishes. No statement from Huawei was available at the time of writing.

Google's "Casting" Ecosystem Bringing Down Wi-Fi Networks Due to New Bug
Google's ecosystem of "casting" devices are allegedly bringing down residential Wi-Fi networks due to a newly discovered flaw. According to Engadget, which gathered the various reports of this behavior from around the Web, Google products capable of "casting," such as the Google Home and the Chromecast itself, are overloading the Wi-Fi networks to which they are connected when being woken from a sleep state. This apparently occurs due to the erroneous generation of more than 100,000 packets of data, which are immediately sent over the network. The effect is a sort of unintentional and highly localized DDoS (Deliberate Denial of Service) attack. As Engadget notes, initial reports suggested that this issue was limited to TP-Link Archer C7 routers. However, subsequent information has surfaced suggesting that other TP-Links models are also affected, as are various units from ASUS, Linksys, Netgear, and Synology. While TP-Link has already issued a firmware update to correct the issue, Google has, so far, only promised that it is actively investigating the problem, and said it will issue a fix for it when it is available. It is recommended that users check to see if a firmware update for their router is available, if they believe the issue is impacting their home networks.

Nokia Signs Five-Year Agreement with Optus for Joint Networking Operations
Nokia signed a five-year agreement with Optus under which it will manage and maintain key components of Optus' network infrastructure, operations, and field maintenance. Nokia will also be called on to collaborate with Optus to develop a Network Operations Centre (NOC). The joint facility will work to "[build] on global best practices and leveraging local talent to deliver higher performance networks." Nokia expects to provide the joint venture with network operations and software services, and as well as robotics, artificial intelligence and "extreme automation." Its Field Services division will also manage all components of work associated with mobile base station equipment and facilities for Optus. No financial terms for the agreeement were disclosed.

... Michael Gariffo, Faulkner Information Services


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