China Files Case Against Intel's Wireless Network

China has launched a case against American chipmaker Intel's near-monopoly on encryption standards for wireless local area network (WLAN) equipment, state press reported May 29. China has accused the makers of the technology developed by the Intel of unethical behavior and has asked the International Standards Organization (ISO) to review the case.

It says that the American Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), actual makers of the technology, broke ISO rules when its national bodies voted on new technology to mend security loopholes in the WLAN standard. China now wants the ISO to investigate the fast-track process to determine "whether the ethical and procedural rules and principles have indeed been violated and whether the ballots have been unfairly influenced by those ethical and procedural violations".

China's WAPI and American IEEE applied to the ISO for a new international standard last October, but the Chinese technology's bid for approval was rejected in a ballot in March this year. ISO will investigate the case, the report said.

China has bristled at depending on proprietary foreign high technology and in 2003 tried to force multinationals wanting to sell wireless computer equipment to support its proprietary and secret encryption standard called WAPI.

Beijing was forced to scrap its plans for the system when companies such as Intel threatened to stop selling their products in China, claiming they would have to give up intellectual property rights to Chinese companies.

Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2006

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