06 November 2019

TIME-Excellence lecture: Security of 5G-networks

TIME-Excellence lecture: Security of 5G-networks

Please join us for a TIME Excellence lecture by Christian Hocepied.

The lecture will take place via the internet on Wednesday the 13th of November at 15:00 (Athens time). The talk will focus on a common EU approach to the security of 5G networks. In order to take part please follow this link:

Participation will be capped to 15 participants. If you are planning to participate please contact the moderator, Dr. Andreas Panagopoulos, at least a day in advance.

Christian Hocepied is currently Senior Researcher at the Research Centre in Information, Law and Society (CRIDS) at the University of Namur. His research is focused on the regulatory and competition law dimension of digitization. 
An important issue in this framework is how to ensure an adequate level of network security when key equipment is manufactured by firms owned and / or affiliated by the Chinese government, notably Huawei and ZTE. Since 2005 many intelligence officials, militaries agencies, and security analysts have noted security risks of using such equipment, including theft of intellectual property, surveillance, espionage, and sabotage. The United States, New Zealand, and Australia have restricted Huawei and ZTE from networks. The risk is not limited to large corporations. Also small and medium size enterprises that use networks may have their valuable data surveilled, sabotaged, or stolen by actors associated with the Chinese government and military. Huawei and 68 of its affiliates are listed on the Entity List of the United States Department of Commerce, which prohibits US companies from doing business with these firms without first obtaining a license. In practical terms, US firms cannot license 5G patents to Huawei, nor can Huawei sell its goods outside China. Without access to US technology, Huawei has difficulty making 4G and 5G products for the world market.
The EU governments are divided on the issue. Reason is that Chinese economic diplomacy created a split between Member States (e.g. 16+1 now 17 +1) and has some friendly governments diluting proposed common positions(see attached EU Commission press release). 
Last year, the EU adopted nevertheless Regulation on screening of foreign direct investment. However, the regulation broadly confirms the status quo. 
The Commission has moreover announced a communication before the end of 2019 identifying how to fill existing gaps in EU law in order to address the distortive effects of foreign state ownership and state financing in the internal market.
Besides his involvement at the university, Christian Hocepied also advises the international association ChinaEU on legal and regulatory aspects.

Before joining CRIDS, Christian worked as a principal analyst with Cullen International (Brussels), where he designed and launched their new multi-client competition law service. This service provides an overview of all EU and national competition decisions in the eCommunications area.
From 1985 to 2013, Christian Hocepied worked in different capacities for the European Commission: the last 4 years as Principal Expert in the Antitrust Media Unit of DG Competition, before as head of sector in the telecommunications unit of the DG Connect. Before joining the EU Commission, Christian worked among other as a lawyer in the Belgian Senate.

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