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Huawei’s US research division – Futurewei – separates its operations from its parent company. The reason is that the Chinese manufacturer was placed on a blacklist for trade in May. That puts two insiders against Reuters.

Futurewei has banned Huawei employees from its offices. Employees of the Community industry have been further migrated to a new IT system and are no longer allowed to use Huawei’s name or logo in their communications, according to one employee of the Community industry. However, Huawei remains the owner of Futurewei. The department’s lawyer, Milton Frazier, refused to respond to the news and referred Reuters to Huawei spokesman Chase Skinner. Skinner didn’t respond.

Futurewei is the research and development department of Huawei in the US. The company employs hundreds of people in offices in Silicon Valley, Seattle, Chicago and Dallas. The company has filed over 2,100 patents in the field of telecommunications, 5G networks and video and camera technologies. However, the operations of Futurewei have so far been almost indistinguishable from those of its parent company, according to an employee. There was no separate brand or website and the employees often said they worked for the Chinese company.

Both companies also have many research collaborations and scholarship programmes with American universities.


However, Huawei was blacklisted by the US government in May, after years of suspicion of Chinese espionage through the company’s equipment. According to the US, the manufacturer therefore poses a national security risk. As a result of the ban, the company is no longer allowed to buy American-made products and services. Futurewei can’t get on that list because it’s an American company.

However, there are warnings and many universities are reconsidering their cooperation with companies. 26 members of the congress sent a letter last year to Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos, warning that the company’s collaborations with at least fifty American companies could constitute a “significant risk to national security”.

The fear is that Huawei is using the collaborations to collect research on artificial intelligence, telecommunications and robots, which can be used in hacking and espionage campaigns, or to give Chinese companies an edge over American competitors. Some universities are now wondering whether they can continue their cooperation with Futurewei, which is not on the government’s list, even if they stop research and funding agreements with Huawei.

This news article was automatically translated from Dutch to give Techzine.eu a head start. All news articles after September 1, 2019 are written in native English and NOT translated. All our background stories are written in native English as well. For more information read our launch article.