TikTok Under Hot Waters After Senators Rally for a Ban
Multiple lawmakers have expressed concerns over TikTok’s ability to safeguard the data of US citizens. It is not the first time the Chinese-owned short form video hosting service has come into question over the misuse of data.
Trump‘s team took a stand against the alleged manipulation of TikTok user data by the Chinese government and enacted a ban against TikTok and WeChat services from operating in the United States, citing national security concerns. The Biden administration lifted the ban in June with the proposal to use Oracle servers for routing all TikTok data from the US. The proposal, however, has not yet taken effect.
In the latest turn of events, FBI director Christopher Wray when addressing the members of the House Homeland Security Committee expressed his security fear by saying he is “extremely concerned” about TikTok operations in the United States.
Wray’s statement caused a flory of replies by other Senators who supported Wray’s statement and expressed their disapproval of TikTok’s operation in the United States.
Taking to the TV, Senator Mark Warner, the Senate Intelligence Committee Chair, showed support for the Trump administration’s decision to ban TikTok’s operations in the United States. When talking with Shannon Bream on Fox News Sunday, he said:
Well, I think Donald Trump was right. It is – *TikTok* is a massive collector of information, oftentimes of our Children. They can visualize even down to your keystrokes. So if you’re a parent, and you’ve got a kid on TikTok, I would be very, very concerned. All that data your child is inputting and receiving is being stored somewhere in Beijing.
NEW—Senator Mark Warner (D-VA) Chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee:
“TikTok is a enormous threat.”
“So if you’re a parent and you got a kid on TikTok, I would be very, very concerned.” pic.twitter.com/qdggWdKFz1
— Brendan Carr (@BrendanCarrFCC) November 21, 2022
Tom Cotton, the Arkansas Senator, stepped on Twitter to support the concerns regarding TikTok. In a tweet, the Senator expressed his disbelief on why TikTok data from the United States is handled by Chinese personnel operating within the United States.
We need to know why TikTok uses foreign nationals with Chinese state ties to handle American citizens’ data—and why @SecMayorkas approved those visas. https://t.co/YAKP2HgTC2
— Tom Cotton (@SenTomCotton) November 14, 2022
Tom Cotton’s sentiment was shared by other Senators. As reported by Bloomberg, Senator Marco Rubio of Florida and Mike Gallagher remarked they were working on enacting legalisation that would pave the way for banning TikTok in the United States.
The huge outcry regarding TikTok’s national security concerns has Senators demanding a complete ban on TikTok. However, the Biden administrator is yet to take any decisive action against the Chinese-owned video-sharing platform. The plan to route TikTok United States data through Oracle servers which can be monitored and reviewed by United States officials has not yet taken effect.
“We want to focus on getting in front of the adversary. We don’t want to take a reactionary posture in developing policy”, is what Kemba Walden, Principal Deputy National Cyber Director had to say about this at the CNBC Technology Executive Council Summit.