UK prime minister Boris Johnson has already made plans to shrink the involvement of the Chinese firm Huawei in Britain’s 5G infrastructure development. Will Boris Johnson go one step further and follow the USA in banning other Chinese tech companies such as Hikvision and Dahua? 

Australia has already started removing Hikvision from its state-owned buildings. 

With the latest of  Australia’s round of expanded to 5G restrictions, the Government of Southern Australian has made a change to get rid of all closed-circuit security cameras made by a Chinese surveillance giant from health department buildings, In accordance with an article by the Sydney Morning Herald.

This article states that the cameras in question are made by the partially state-owned Chinese security technology company Hikvision, which was blacklisted in October of 2019 by the United States for the alleged role they had to play in human rights violations and in purporting to create a security network amongst federal agencies. Issues with Hikvision in Southern Australia were first noticed in the course of a Commonwealth-funded trial in which Hikvision security cameras were to be used in the rooms of aged care residents. This was to improve the overall safety.

Upon South Australia Health asking for more details from Hikvision to ensure its compliance with South Australian security guidelines, the company, Hikvision quit the pilot, with South Australian Health Minister Stephen Wade further saying that “security and technical issues” arose with the pilot. This also comes following the Department of Defence removing two Hikvision security cameras from their Perth and Adelaide bases in 2018. However, despite this ban, Hikvision security cameras are still being used in and across the public hospital network in New South Wales.

The ban serves as a constant reminder that the importation and outsourcing of technology products and services bring its own set of complex circumstances. Therefore It is paramount that the Australian government fully understands the full suite of security risks inherent in such technology forms.

NSW Health has also said its public hospital network was serviced by CCTV,  a range of suppliers did this service, including none other than Hikvision.

In contrast to the above stories, Hikvision in Europe has experienced significant growth and development. From just a few people, the company now employees over 300 dedicated employees serving customers all over Europe.

Hikvision would not have been so successful without its state background. But, the same factor that has contributed to its success in China is causing a big problem in the overseas market. The future business success of Hikvision overseas massively depends on its future corporate policies.