Among other agencies in the United States, New York has become the latest to ban TikTok on all its government-issued devices.
After multiple agencies put a ban on TikTok, New York has become the latest to ban the social media app from all its government-issued devices. This step is taken to ward off all kinds of security threats that China may pose to them. The ban has been implemented effective immediately, and all the officials have been instructed to delete their accounts and the application within 30 days.
On a larger scale, the state of New York also banned TikTok from all government devices from 2020. Over the years, New Jersey, Ohio, and Texas have also banned the app over the same concerns as others.
Earlier this year, the Biden administration also escalated pressure on detaching TikTok from its Chinese ownership. TikTok is owned by a Chinese Company called ByteDance, and major Chinese government agencies have recently become their key investors.
Montana governor Greg Gianforte has signed a new law that bans TikTok not only on all government devices but on all devices of the Montanans, effective starting in 2024.
TikTok CEO Shou Zi Chew has already testified in front of the Congress in a 5-hour-long session that the application is not leveraging U.S. citizens’ data to compromise national security. In his opening statement, he said: “, Let me state this unequivocally: ByteDance is not an agent of China or any other country.”
TikTok has also countered the action of the Montana government by filing a lawsuit against them to keep the app alive among Montanans. Along with it, multiple content creators on TikTok who belong to Montana have also filed a lawsuit against the ban. TikTok is also funding the lawsuits filed by these creators even though it did not open up about their involvement earlier.
Even private tech industry groups, including NetChoice and the Chamber of Progress, have backed TikTok’s lawsuit stating that “Montana’s effort to cut Montanans off from the global network of TikTok users ignores and undermines the structure, design, and purpose of the internet.”
Even though multiple cities and states of the United States have banned the application from their systems or their entire citizen count, no evidence has been presented against the app regarding any safety concerns.
The only thing that led these government bodies to take such drastic action is the involvement of the Chinese government as an active investor in the parent company of TikTok. China has a strong influence on all private companies operating there. It has enough stakes in these companies to influence decision-making and access all the app data of their products.
If the China government wanted to get information, the ways available on the dark market are much easier and potentially offer more compromised data than TikTok could. So the ban, if not backed by proper evidence, might have to go back soon, considering how the private tech companies and individual content creators are pushing for its repeal.
With a mixture of literature, cinema, and photography, Manish is mostly traveling. When he is not, he is probably writing another tech news for you!
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