TikTok is the viral video-sharing and social networking app which has been sweeping the nation, but that may come to an end soon. President Donald Trump shared with reporters on Friday that he has plans to ban the app in the United States, followed by stating “”We’ll see what happens, but we’re looking at a lot of alternatives with respect to TikTok.”
If the president moves forward with banning TikTok from the United States, they would not be the first country to do so. India also banned the app in June, citing concerns related to national security and privacy. Trump has also banned a potential sale of TikTok to Microsoft.
With an estimated user base of 80 million users in the United States, the app was previously known as Musical.ly. In 2017, Musical.ly was acquired by ByteDance, a Chinese technology company, for US $1 billion and rebranded as TikTok.
Despite assurances from TikTok, the chief of staff, Mark Meadows, are firm in their belief that TikTok poses a significant risk to American security. He stated, “There are a number of administration officials who are looking at the national security risk as it relates to TikTok, WeChat and other apps that have the potential for national security exposure, specifically as it relates to the gathering of information on American citizens by a foreign adversary.”
In response, TikTok has highlighted the fact that they are led by an American CEO and create thousands of jobs in the United States. TikTok’s user data is also stored within the US, and they are “committed to protecting our users’ privacy and safety as we continue working to bring joy to families and meaningful careers to those who create on our platform.”