Chinese equipment makers including Huawei and ZTE were targeted by expanded Federal Communications Commission (FCC) action blocking the sale of electronic products and services, claiming they pose a threat to US national security.

Huawei, ZTE, Hytera Communications, Hangzhou Hikvision Digital Technology and Dahua Technology are the same five named in the Secure Equipment Act signed into law in 2021, which prevents the FCC from licensing telecoms and video surveillance equipment made by companies seen as a security threat.

In addition to widening the scope, FCC chair Jessica Rosenworcel stated the agency added equipment and services from five additional entities, without naming the subsidiaries or affiliates.

Richard Windsor, founder of research blog Radio Free Mobile, explained the scope of the ban moves from handsets and network equipment to enterprise products including routers and switches.

He noted the latest move is largely symbolic, but may pave the way for further restrictions in future.

With the US accounting for 4.6 per cent of Huawei’s total sales, Windsor reckons the new regulations are unlikely to cause the vendor significant problems.

The new rules follow a series of FCC actions designed to keep domestic networks secure: it also prohibited the use of public funds to purchase equipment or services covered by the policies.

In early October the US tightened restrictions of the sale of advanced chipmaking equipment and software to China, requiring manufacturers to obtain a licence from the Department of Commerce to export certain goods produced outside the country.