Senate Unanimously Passes Eshoo, Scalise Bill Protecting U.S. Telecom Networks Against Chinese National Security Threats
WASHINGTON, D.C. — Today, U.S. Reps. Anna G. Eshoo (D-Calif.) and Steve Scalise (R-La.) celebrated Senate passage of their Secure Equipment Act of 2021, legislation they introduced in June prohibiting the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) from reviewing or issuing new equipment licenses to companies on the FCC’s “Covered Equipment or Services List” that pose a national security threat. Senators Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) and Ed Markey (D-Mass.), who introduced similar legislation in May, helped usher the bill through the Senate. The Secure Equipment Act now heads to President Biden's desk to be signed into law.
The Secure Equipment Act would prevent equipment manufactured by Chinese state-backed firms such as Huawei, ZTE, Hytera, Hikvision and Dahua from being further utilized and marketed in the United States. This legislation adds an extra layer of security that slams the door on entities that pose a national security risk from having a presence in the U.S. telecommunications network.
“For over a decade, I have fought to address vulnerabilities in our telecommunications systems, and today my bill with Rep. Scalise passed in the Senate. Equipment made by Huawei and ZTE, companies linked to the Chinese government, increases the vulnerabilities of our telecommunication systems and puts our national security at risk. Our bipartisan, bicameral bill prohibits the FCC from issuing licenses for any telecommunications equipment made by Huawei or ZTE. Bravo to Senators Markey and Rubio who pushed our legislation through the Senate just days after it passed in the House. I’m eager to see this bill signed into law by the President soon,” said Rep. Eshoo.
“I applaud the Senate for unanimously passing the Secure Equipment Act that I authored with Rep. Anna Eshoo. Our bipartisan legislation will prevent China from infiltrating America’s telecommunications networks and compromising our national security. The Secure Equipment Act forcefully signals to the Chinese Communist Party that America is committed to protecting the privacy and security of our citizens, and I look forward to this legislation becoming law,” said Whip Scalise.