Members of the U.S. armed forces won’t be able to buy ZTE and Huawei phones on military bases, under a new directive from the Pentagon issued over concerns about security.
Officials in the U.S. government have expressed fears that the Chinese government or others in China could hack into the Chinese-made phones, or somehow use them to gather information from American users, which could be particularly problematic if those users are military or government personnel.
The Wall Street Journal reported that officials in the Defense Department fear the phones could be used to track troop movements.
“Huawei and ZTE devices may pose an unacceptable risk to Department’s personnel, information and mission,” Pentagon spokesman Major Dave Eastburn said in a statement provided to the Washington Post. “In light of this information, it was not prudent for the Department’s exchanges to continue selling them to DoD personnel.”
Neither ZTE nor Huawei has issued a comment on the decision.
Stars and Stripes, the newspaper of the American armed forces, first reported on the concerns that phones sold on U.S. bases could be hacked by the Chinese.