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US Senate passes legislation to ban TikTok from government devices!

The US Senate just passed legislation to ban TikTok from US government devices. This is to limit perceived information-security risks.
US Senate passes legislation to ban TikTok from government devices!
File photo: TikTok app

US Senate wants to ban TikTok from government devices for data protection

File photo: TikTok logo
File photo: TikTok logo

The No TikTok on Government Devices Act, introduced by Missouri Republican Sen. Josh Hawley, was approved in a unanimous vote. The action is the latest by US lawmakers to target the short-form video app, which has more than a billion users globally. Due to China's control over TikTok's parent company, ByteDance, US officials worry that the Chinese government may have access to user data via the app.

Last year, Colorado Republican Rep. Ken Buck filed a companion bill in the House. The members of the House Oversight Committee have not yet given their approval. In light of the TikTok bill's Senate passing, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi stated that it is still unclear whether the house will take it up. She added that members were engaging with White House officials on the bill's content.

The most recent legislative move comes as TikTok and the US government are attempting to reach an agreement that would let the app continue providing services to US consumers. Between TikTok and the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States, there have been years of behind-closed-doors discussions as well as new allegations of delays in the negotiations.

Additionally, a bill to outright outlaw TikTok in the US as well as other applications having a "significant influence" from nations including China, Russia, Iran, North Korea, Cuba, and Venezuela was submitted by US politicians led by Florida Republican Sen. Marco Rubio. In launching the bill, Rubio also signaled some displeasure, stating that the federal government “has yet to take a single substantial action” on the topic.

Several US senators did not show full support for Rubio's proposal. Hawley stated that he believes that it would be fine if the US government and TikTok finds a compromise to secure US users' data. Otherwise, he believes stricter measures must be done.

Independently, certain US government entities have taken action to restrict TikTok usage among their personnel. The app is already prohibited from being used on devices owned by the US government, the State Department, and the Department of Homeland Security. But the legislation introduced on Wednesday would affect every government employee.

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Source: CNN Business

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