White House orders federal agencies to ban TikTok from federal devices over communist spying concerns

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The White House has directed federal agencies to prohibit the popular social media platform TikTok from being used on government-issued devices.

According to experts, the smartphone app collects private information via invasive software. ByteDance, the company that owns TikTok, has denied allegations that it shares personal information with the communist Chinese government.

Because of privacy concerns, some states, including Texas and South Dakota, have already prohibited the platform from being used on government devices.

“TikTok harvests vast amounts of data from its users’ devices—including when, where, and how they conduct Internet activity—and offers this trove of potentially sensitive information to the Chinese government,” Texas Gov. Greg Abbott (R) said about the ban in a statement released in January.

“South Dakota has banned the use of TikTok in state government. We will not participate in intelligence gathering for China, a country that despises America “South Dakota Republican Gov. Kirsti Noem said in November.

According to one survey, there is a significant difference between popular TikTok trends in China and those in the United States. Tristan Harris, a former Google employee, told CBS’ “60 Minutes” that the Chinese version was far less destructive than the one in the United States.
“It’s almost as if they recognize that technology is influencing children’s development, and they make their domestic version of TikTok a spinach version, while shipping the opium version to the rest of the world,” Harris explained.

“If you’re under 14, they show you science experiments you can do at home, museum exhibits, patriotism videos, and educational videos,” Harris explained of the Chinese version.

The Office of Management and Budget requested that agencies remove the app from federal devices within 30 days.
Some critics are calling for the app to be completely banned in the United States. TikTok is used by an estimated 100 million adults and teenagers in the United States.