The hugely popular cell phone app “TikTok” will no longer be available for download in the United States as of September 20th, 2020. The move comes on the heels of continued tension between the US Government and the Chinese Communist Party. The app is owned by the Chinese company known as “Bytedance” and they are required by law to report to the CCP. So that means all of the extremely valuable data that they collect about their userbase is subject to seizure and analysis by the Chinese Government.
Although US users will no longer be able to download the app after September 20th, they will still be able to use the app. “WeChat,” another Chinese-owned phone app, will also no longer be available for download in the US and it probably won’t work after that date as well. The US Government has given ByteDance until November 12th 2020 to sell their US TikTok operations to a US company. If ByteDance fails to reach that deadline, then TikTok will officially be banned.
ByteDance was in talks to structure a deal with Microsoft to offload US TikTok but that deal fell through. Another deal is in the works with the US company Oracle. Any deal that ByteDance wants to strike with a US company must be approved by the United States government first. The heightened level of scrutiny on ByteDance is simply because of their Chinese Communist Party connections which lead to obvious security concerns. TikTok has been flagged several times for inappropriate and/or illegal tactics within their “free” app such as spying on users’ clipboard and keystrokes.
Other nations such as India have already banned TikTok, WeChat, and several other Chinese apps. Every nations’ Government that decides to ban Chinese apps all say the same thing. There are huge security concerns because of the involvement of the CCP who are known for spying and also straight-up hacking both online and in person.
TikTok, WeChat downloads will be barred from US starting Sunday – CNET
U.S. Bans Chinese Apps TikTok and WeChat, Citing Security Concerns – WSJ
US will ban WeChat and TikTok downloads on Sunday – CNN