The White House ordered all federal agencies to remove TikTok from government-issued devices within thirty days. Canada also banned the use of the app on government officials’ devices.
Director of the US Office of Management and Budget Shlanda Yong issued an executive order on Monday directing federal agencies to “remove and disallow installation” of the Chinese-owned social media app and to “deny Internet traffic” from government devices. .
“This directive is part of the administration’s commitment to securing our digital infrastructure and protecting the security and privacy of the American people,” said US Federal Chief Information Security Officer Chris DeRocha.
This deadline was mandated by the US Congress. He voted in December to ban TikTok in the wake of national security threats to federal employees. ByteDance, the American company that owns TikTok, denies the allegations.
The move by the Biden administration comes after more than half of the US states, as well as the European Commission, Taiwan and, most recently, Canada, issued similar directives.
The American Civil Liberties Union warns of a complete ban on TikTok
The US Congress’s Foreign Affairs Committee is scheduled to vote on a bill on Tuesday that would give President Biden new powers to ban TikTok for all citizens. More than 100 million people in the US use the TikTok app.
Michael McCaul, chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, said, “TikTok allows China to monitor and manipulate its users while also allowing it to use Americans’ data for nefarious activities.” ” The American Civil Liberties Union has warned against any attempt to ban TikTok outright.
“Congress should not censor this entire social media platform and strip Americans of their constitutional right to free speech,” Gina Leontoff, the union’s senior policy adviser, said in a statement.
“We have the right to use Tik Tok and other platforms to share our thoughts, ideas and opinions with people across the country and around the world,” he added.
The Canadian government also banned TikTok in official devices
Meanwhile, Canada has also become the latest country to ban TikTok from all government devices. This order is applicable from Tuesday. Canada’s chief information officer has determined it “presents an unacceptable level of risk to privacy and security,” the government said Monday.
TikTok said the decision was “curious” because it was made “without citing any specific security concerns or contacting us to ask any questions.”
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