Bloomberg has raised the issue of Huawei Marine Networks’ involvement in building or improving vital undersea communications cables. So far all the security and intelligence attention has been on Huawei’s threat to the 5G network, but access to these cables, which carry internet and other communications traffic around the world, might give the Chinese intelligence services access to even greater volumes of key data than 5G. It is claimed that Chinese government support for Huawei is allowing the company to undercut other bidders in order to gain access to the valuable contracts – and, possibly, the intelligence.
Western agencies have long had access to these vital undersea cables and since many of them run through British waters before crossing the Atlantic it is something that has helped to give the UK an intelligence edge. Other nations such as Russia have worked by trying to tap these undersea cables from submarines. Now it seems that China wants to join the game.
You should be able to read the Bloomberg piece here: http://www.bloomberg.com/opinion/articles/2019-04-09/china-spying-the-internet-s-underwater-cables-are-next