According to an article by CNBC, the U.S. is strongly considering banning TikTok, among many other Chinese social media applications.
TikTok, described as “an application used to create short dance, lip-sync, comedy and talent videos”, is currently the #1 most downloaded Entertainment App on Apple’s App Store. The app was originally released in China in September 2016 and was subsequently released internationally a year later. The application immediately began gaining traction and is now estimated to have over 800 million active users worldwide. In addition, the popular app has been downloaded over 1.5 billion times across the App Store and Google Play.
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo told Fox News on July 7th that the U.S. is looking into banning TikTok due to its ability to collect and store data from users’ devices and its Chinese origin. “We are taking this very seriously” stated Pompeo. When asked if a U.S. citizen should download TikTok, Pompeo said, “only if you want your private information in the hands of the Chinese Communist Party.”
In response to Pompeo’s interview, a TikTok correspondent released a statement saying “TikTok is led by an American CEO, with hundreds of employees and key leaders across safety, security, product, and public policy here in the U.S. We have no higher priority than promoting a safe and secure app experience for our users. We have never provided user data to the Chinese government, nor would we do so if asked.”
TikTok was recently banned in India, which is the app’s biggest overseas market, due to data security and privacy concerns.
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Digital Forensics/Cybersecurity/Information Technology