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Canada dismisses China’s warning of repercussions over Huawei ban

SHERBROOKE, Quebec (Reuters) – Canada’s government on Friday dismissed China’s warning of repercussions if Ottawa banned Huawei Technologies Co Ltd [HWT.UL] from supplying equipment to 5G networks, saying it would not compromise on security.

FILE PHOTO: Canada’s Minister of Public Safety Ralph Goodale answers questions from media on the second day of Foreign ministers meetings from G7 countries in Toronto, Ontario, Canada April 23, 2018. REUTERS/Fred Thornhill/File Photo

China’s ambassador to Canada issued the threat on Thursday as relations between the two nations continued to deteriorate after a senior Huawei executive was arrested in Vancouver last month on a U.S. extradition warrant. China has also detained two Canadians.

Canadian officials are studying the security implications of 5G networks, the latest generation of cellular mobile communications, but their report is not expected in the immediate future, a source familiar with the matter told Reuters on Wednesday.

Some Canadian allies have already imposed restrictions on using Huawei equipment, citing the risk of espionage.

Canadian Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale, asked at a cabinet retreat about the Chinese ambassador’s remarks, said Ottawa had already made clear it would not cut corners on national security.

“We understand that those sorts of comments will be made in the process, but we will make our judgment based on what is right for Canada and not be deterred from making the right decision,” he told reporters.

“We are determined to stand our ground based on what is right for Canada … this is a tough and turbulent world.”

Goodale noted that China had made similar comments after Australia banned Huawei from supplying 5G equipment last year.

Western intelligence agencies have for years raised concerns about Huawei’s ties to China’s government and the possibility its equipment could be used for espionage.

China detained the two Canadians last month after Meng Wanzhou, chief financial officer of Huawei, was arrested in Vancouver on a U.S. extradition request.

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau later told reporters he was concerned about “the apparent blending of Chinese commercial interests with Chinese political positioning”.

Trudeau has called several world leaders in recent weeks to raise concerns about the case of the two Canadians. The Chinese ambassador on Thursday advised Canada to stop seeking support from allies.

“We are going to continue to stand up for the rule of law … this is something we continue to impress upon the Chinese authorities, firmly and respectfully,” Trudeau said at the end of a cabinet retreat in Sherbrooke, Quebec.

Reporting by David Ljunggren; Editing by Paul Simao and Susan Thomas

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Philippine financial service firm flags data breach affecting 900,000 clients

A lock icon, signifying an encrypted Internet connection, is seen on an Internet Explorer browser in a photo illustration in Paris April 15, 2014. REUTERS/Mal Langsdon

MANILA (Reuters) – Cebuana Lhuillier, a Philippine financial service provider, said on Saturday that the data of 900,000 clients had been accessed without authorization and that it had already alerted authorities to investigate the incident.

The breach came as Philippine investigators were looking into allegations by the country’s foreign minister last week that a privately contracted firm took away documents and data from the Department of Foreign Affair’s passport database.

Cebuana Lhuillier, whose services include pawning, remittance, microinsurance, and business to business micro loan solutions, said some information like birthdays, addresses and sources of income, were affected in the breach involving an email server used for marketing.

“It’s just a very small portion of our clientele. The main server containing all clients of Cebuana Lhuillier remains protected and uncompromised”, said Richard Villaseran, the company’s corporate communications division head.

He added the company’s clients had been advised how to further protect their personal information.

Reporting by Karen Lema; Editing by Michael Perry

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