With the argument of espionage, the United States, Canada and the European Union prohibit the use of Chinese app TikTok in their government devices. For the Chinese authorities, it is an abuse by the Americans.
Officials from those countries will not be able to have TikTok -a short video app created by the ByteDance company- on their official smartphones, as they accuse China of using the data for spying.
The Asian government responded to the United States, singling it out for “abusing its state power” and its “concept of national security”, repressing “unjustifiably companies from other countries”.
Chinese foreign spokeswoman Mao Ning noted, according to EFE: “America, a great power, shows a lack of self-confidence by fearing an app popular with young people.”
The United States seeks that the TikTok ban is not only in the government, but in the entire country
TikTok is one of the most popular apps in the world, with over 3 billion global downloads, as stated by the BBC citing the company Sensor Tower Data.
According to the Americans, ByteDance, the company behind TikTok, shares their data with the Chinese government. There is a Republican plan for the ban not only to cover the Biden administration, but the entire country.
With this, it would follow in the footsteps of India, which banned the use of the video app for the entire nation due to geopolitical problems with China.
In a vote of 24-16, the House Foreign Affairs Committee gave the green light to the Deterrence of America’s Technological Adversaries Act (DATA).
The bill seeks to penalize, even ban, TikTok nationwide if the company is found to have shared user data with people associated with the Chinese government,
Republican Rep. Michael McCaul (Texas) is pushing the legislation. “TikTok is a modern-day Trojan horse of the Chinese Communist Party, used to monitor and exploit the personal information of Americans,” McCaul said, quoted by The Verge.
Canada and the European Union also veto the Chinese app
The positions of Canada and the European Union are similar to those of the United States. The Canadians say the app presents “an unacceptable level of privacy and security risk” and are investigating what TikTok does with user data, according to the BBC.
Mona Fortier, President of the Treasury Board of Canada, said: “On a mobile device, TikTok’s data collection methods provide considerable access to the phone’s content.”
For her part, Sonya Gospodinova, spokesperson for the European Union, indicated that the measure seeks to “protect the Commission against cybersecurity threats and actions that can be exploited for cyberattacks against the corporate environment.”
The TikTok ban on government devices applies in Canada from this week, while in the European Union it will take effect on March 15.