On Friday, US President Donald Trump informed that he might ban TikTok, a Chinese video-sharing social media app, in the country. The move comes in the backdrop of stalled trade and escalated tensions between the United States and China, amidst the Coronavirus pandemic.
“We are looking at TikTok. We may be banning it… A lot of happening. We are looking at other alternatives with respect to TikTok,” President Donald Trump said addressing the media.
Speaking to Fox Business, a TikTok spokesperson said, “Hundreds of millions of people come to TikTok for entertainment and connection, including our community of creators and artists who are building livelihoods from the platform. We’re motivated by their passion and creativity, and committed to protecting their privacy and safety as we continue working to bring joy to families and meaningful careers to those who create on our platform.”
Reportedly, President Donald Trump could impose a ban on the Chinese app TikTok as early as Saturday, the 1st of August 2020.
Security threat to the US
The operations of the said Chinese app have been under the scanner of the secretive Committee on Foreign Investment in the US. As per the report, lawmakers in the country had also raised privacy concerns and accused TikTok of sharing user data of Americans with the Communist Party of China (CCP). The security concerns surrounding the app has forced the US military to direct its soldiers to stop using it.
India bans TikTok
In June, the Government of India banned TikTok and 58 apps over security and privacy concerns. The Ministry of Information Technology, invoking its power under section 69A of Information Technology Act, with the relevant provisions of the Information Technology (Procedure and Safeguards for Blocking of Access of Information by Public) Rules 2009 has ordered a block on the use of 59 apps saying that these apps are “engaged in activities which are prejudicial to sovereignty and integrity of India, defence of India, the security of the state and public order”.