Following the U.S. Army and Navy TikTok ban, Congress is now seeking to ban TikTok on all government devices.
Last year the U.S. Navy, followed by the Army, instituted a ban of TikTok on government-issued devices. Now, members of Congress are seeking to extend that ban to ALL government-issued devices.
Representatives Ken Buck (R-CO) and Lou Correa (D-CA) are sponsoring legislation to ban TikTok on all government devices.
The No TikTok on Government Devices Act (H.R. 6896) is a companion bill to Senate legislation introduced in March. “TikTok is a Chinese-owned company and is required by law to share whatever information the Chinese Communist Party wants whenever it wants,” Ken Buck says. “Because of this, several federal agencies have already taken steps to restrict the spyware app on government devices.”
This bill takes that move a step further to ban TikTok on all government-owned devices in the interest of national security. “TikTok is a cybersecurity threat to our country,” Buck says.
TikTok has made moves to separate its operations from its Chinese parent company, ByteDance. Earlier this year, the company announced a new swanky office building in downtown L.A. That move came after poaching nearly two-dozen employees from Facebook in 2018.
- IP addresses
- Geo-location data
- Unique device identifiers
- Browsing and search history
- Third-party social network providers
- Behavioral information about TikTok use
Lawmakers are concerned about TikTok’s geo-location and unique device identifiers. “Geo-locations or internet search histories of federal employees can reveal sensitive information, such as the location of secret government facilities.” Officials worry this information could be used to blackmail federal employees, too.