When the app first started to take off more in America after its rebrand, there was a large amount of concern over the origins of the app and its parent company being based in China, with much of the user data being stored on Chinese servers.
Famously, the app was threatened with a ban by then U.S. President Donald Trump in 2020 with those same security and data concerns being listed as the reason why. The news of the data came in and immediately charged many in the Republican legislative base that has largely been anti-TikTok.
TikTok is in the grip of the Chinese Communist Party. If your kids are on it, the Chinese government likely has their social security number, privacy data, their pictures, and more. Make no mistake, China is using and will use this private information against the American people.
— Mike Pompeo (@mikepompeo) July 2, 2022
The Biden Administration is looking to weaken national security by letting TikTok and Communist China get access to even more US user data.
— Sen. Marsha Blackburn (@MarshaBlackburn) July 5, 2022
For years, TikTok has assured lawmakers that user data – and business operations – were effectively firewalled from the People’s Republic of China. I’m working with @MarcoRubio in light of reports neither claim is true.
— Mark Warner (@MarkWarner) July 5, 2022
TikTok Confesses US Data Accessed In China
After previously denying personal data of US users was accessible to China-based employees, TikTok has now admitted that it in fact is – sparking calls for the Chinese-owned platform to face a Congressional hearing. pic.twitter.com/tJxoIl54Oc
— Koustuv 🇮🇳 🧭 (@srdmk01) July 5, 2022
The news reinvigorated the debate on whether or not the Chinese app should be banned in America as it is in other countries, most notably India.
There were also individual calls to action from prominent figures in tech and law asking for Google and Apple to remove the application from their app stores, severely limiting the amount of reach it has and the data it could harvest from people.
“#TikTok responded to the senators that actually, yes, some #China-based employees can access some information on #US-based users--but still insisted the data isn’t shared w/ the #CCP.”#India banned the app.#America MUST also.
— Chris Fenton (@TheDragonFeeder) July 6, 2022
Is time up for TikTok? FCC Commissioner @BrendanCarrFCC is asking Apple and Google to remove the platform from their app stores, calling it "a sophisticated tool" for harvesting user data to be seen in China. pic.twitter.com/EJ6RiNdr3u
— TechCheck (@CNBCTechCheck) June 29, 2022
#BREAKING: Government of India bans 59 #Chinese Mobile Apps which are prejudicial to sovereignty and integrity of India, defence of India, security of state and public order. Banned Apps include #TikTok, #ShareIt, #UCBrowser, #WeChat, #Weibo. Here is the complete list. 👇 pic.twitter.com/m1RpVLc9kR
— Aditya Raj Kaul (@AdityaRajKaul) June 29, 2020
TikTok finna be the fall of this country. Better ban that’s shit like India before it’s too late bih
— WeGotTheFeet (@wgtfent) July 5, 2022
It's unknown currently if the Biden administration will respond to this recent development — or if it'll be anything like his predecessor's stance.