President Biden signed a new order instead requiring the Commerce Department to review apps with ties to “jurisdiction of foreign adversaries” that may pose national security risks.
The “increased use in the United States of certain connected software applications designed, developed, manufactured, or supplied by persons owned or controlled by, or subject to the jurisdiction or direction of, a foreign adversary,” which the Secretary of Commerce has defined to include Chinna among others, “continues to threaten the national security, foreign policy, and economy of the United States.”
Trump’s orders seeking to ban TikTok and WeChat in the U.S. had been blocked by federal court jurisdictions.
It’s no secret that American tech companies like Facebook and Google also collect large amounts of user data, but the “scope and scale” of TikTok’s app’s data collection makes it easier for Chinese spies to answer “all kinds of different intelligence questions” on U.S. nationals, Anne Neuberger, NSA’s director of cybersecurity, told TechCrunch at Disrupt 2020. She said there were “greater concerns on how [China] in particular could use all that information collected against populations other than its own.”
The U.S. Department of Commerce, Tencent and ByteDance could not be immediately reached for comment.
This is a developing story.