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Sophos Halts Cybersecurity Sales, Patches to Huawei

Sophos Group has told industry partners to halt sales of Sophos cybersecurity software and hardware to Huawei and its 68 affiliates, or run the risk of violating U.S. export restrictions, according to Computer Business Review.

ChannelE2E reached out to Sophos to confirmed the report. In a reply to our inquiry, Sophos stated:

“CBR has accurately reported that Sophos products subject to US export control jurisdiction may not be provided to Huawei or its affiliates in accordance with the US government restrictions. Effective May 16, 2019, the US government has imposed a licensing requirement subject to the presumption of denial on the provision to Huawei of all products (both hardware and software) that are subject to US export control jurisdiction. The US government publication that lists the 68 Huawei non-US affiliates is available here: https://www.federalregister.gov/documents/2019/05/21/2019-10616/addition-of-entities-to-the-entity-list.”

The stunning move includes this dramatic twist: Partners must also stop providing software updates/patches to Huawei -- even to existing Huawei-affiliated customers, the report states. ChannelE2E does not know if or how much Sophos technology Huawei actually consumes.

The Sophos edict to partners follows the United States government's decision to essentially ban Huawei equipment sales, alleging that the China-based company may have spying-related ties to the Chinese government. Huawei has repeatedly and firmly denied the claims. The dustup has triggered close scrutiny of Huawei worldwide -- prompting some governments rethink if, how or when they'll leverage Huawei's hardware, software and mobile equipment -- especially in the build-out of 5G wireless networks.

Related: Here's a detailed list of countries and companies and their stance toward Huawei purchases and deployments.

Sophos Sales to Huawei: Latest Partner Guidance

An email from Sophos Channel Sales VP Kendra Krause to partners outlined the company's stance with Huawei, according to the Computer Business Review report. The email, according to the report, stated in part:

  • "There can be no new sales of Sophos hardware, software, and technology (including renewals) to Huawei or its affiliates."
  • "Sophos may continue to provide support services under existing subscription or existing service agreements entered into and delivered to Huawei or its 68 affiliates before 16 May 2019, but only to the extent that the support services do not involve the provision of any hardware, software, including, but not limited to, updates or patches, or other technology.”

We're checking in with additional cybersecurity and IT vendors for their stance on Huawei.

Joe Panettieri

Joe Panettieri is co-founder & editorial director of MSSP Alert and ChannelE2E, the two leading news & analysis sites for managed service providers in the cybersecurity market.