Facebook has admitted it has been sharing users’ personal data with Chinese phone company Huawei, despite warnings from U.S. intelligence agencies.
According to Fortune, Facebook insists it’s no big deal. The company maintains that the data in question never left people’s phones, and was not stored on Chinese servers.
As if any of that matters. The damage has been done.
Even though it’s no big deal, Facebook says it will wind down its deal with Huawei by the end of this week.
Facebook now admits that it had arrangements with four Chinese companies: Huawei, Lenovo, Oppo and TCL. However, Facebook vice president Francisco Varela said, the social network approved everything those companies built.
U.S. intelligence chiefs earlier this year warned Americans against using phones made by Huawei, which are also marketed under the youth-oriented Honor brand. FBI Director Christopher Wray said Huawei’s access to the U.S. market “provides the capacity to maliciously modify or steal information [and] conduct undetected espionage.”
Huawei was founded by a former People’s Liberation Army engineer called Ren Zhengfei, and its overseas expansion has been largely funded by lines of credit from state-owned Chinese banks.