As previously reported , the US State Department has backed down on a controversial decision to install computers made by Chinese company Lenovo on its classified networks. According to Frank Wolf, a Republican lawyer, China may have been aggressively spying of the United States. Yang Yuanqing, the chairman of Lenovo Group Ltd. in response to this statement made by the U.S. State Department said that the 16,000 computers his firm sold to the U.S. State Department are not a security threat.
On Thursday, Yang Yuanqing, chairman of Lenovo, told reporters in Hong Kong that there was no reason to worry about the security of computers his company makes. “We’re an international company driven by the market,” Yang said Thursday. “Our operation is very transparent, and trust and honesty are very important to us.”
Lenovo, a well-known name among PC makers is partly owned by the Chinese government and was the buyer of IBM’s PC division in 2005.On May 18, the State Department said it would pull Lenovo systems, which were already deployed in classified settings, change its procurement procedures, and brief other federal agencies on the concerns.
“The [Chinese] government isn’t involved in any daily operation of the company, including our strategic positions, appointment of our CEO, or our financing,” Yang told the Associated Press at a Hong Kong news conference. “Our management team is in charge of that. I don’t believe because Legend Holdings is our biggest shareholder that this means we are a government-controlled company.”
U.S. security analyst, Richard Stiennon doesn’t think that Lenovo’s PCs are a security threat — not that a computer maker couldn’t plant impossible-to-detect spy ware on a system when built. However he believes any purchase of machines from a Chinese-controlled company is a bad idea. “I don’t see any existing security threat from Chinese-based computers,” he said. “But I don’t believe the government should be buying PCs from China,” he continued. “We’re at war with China.” Richard Stiennon was formerly a research director at spy ware vendor Webroot. Now he works as a security analyst at his IT-Harvest consultancy.
Apparently Lenovo isn’t transparent enough for the U.S. State Department, as the latter has already backed out of the decision to install Lenovo’s computers on its secure network at home and at embassies around the world.