Credit: Search Engine Journal
TikTok’s days in the US are numbered; and it seems it is only a matter of time before the hammer falls on the Chinese-owned app. The US House Foreign Affairs Committee has voted to hand President Joe Biden the power to ban TikTok. This of course, will only happen if the president deems such a move necessary.
This has been coming, and the latest move by the US House Foreign Affairs Committee seems like the last straw. Over 30 US states have banned the use of the app on government-owned devices, and a federal ban [if it does happen] will end the use of TikTok in one of its biggest markets in the world.
The US House according to Reuters, today voted “24 to 16 to approve the measure to grant the administration new powers to ban the ByteDance-owned app – which is used by over 100 million Americans – as well as other apps considered security risks.”
“TikTok is a national security threat … It is time to act,” said Representative Michael McCaul, the Republican chair of the committee who sponsored the bill as per Reuters.
“Anyone with TikTok downloaded on their device has given the CCP (Communist Party of China) a backdoor to all their personal information. It’s a spy balloon into their phone,” McCaul added.
Democrats in the House, however, opposed the bill, insisting that it was rushed and required due diligence through debate and consultation with experts.
With the bill, President Biden now has the power to ban any transactions with TikTok, which could of course, prevent anyone in the US from downloading or using the ByteDance-owned app on their devices.
Furthermore, the bill would also require Biden to impose a ban on any entity that “may” transfer sensitive personal data to an entity subject to China’s influence.
This week, the White House gave a 30-day deadline to government agencies to ensure that TikTok is not on any government-owned devices in the US.
Starting from February 28, TikTok will no longer have access to government-owned devices in Canada. The Canadian government believes that the Chinese-owned app presents an “unacceptable level of risk to privacy and security,” and the method by which the app’s parent company ByteDance collects data create vulnerability to cyber-attacks.
Canada said the decision to stop the use of the app in government-owned device is precautionary, especially when you consider concerns about the legal framework governing the information collected from mobile devices. It adds that this is in line with the approach of its international partners.