Sen. Josh Hawley, R-Mo., on Tuesday introduced he would introduce a invoice to put into effect a national ban the social media app TikTok.
“[TikTok] is China’s backdoor into Americans’ lives. It threatens our children’s privacy as well as their mental health,” Hawley tweeted Tuesday morning. “Last month Congress banned it on all government devices. Now I will introduce legislation to ban it nationwide.”
Hawley, an established critic of TikTok, which is owned by way of the Chinese corporate ByteDance, has in the past accused the app of posing a “major security risk” to the United States. He was once the executive creator of the No TikTok on Government Devices Act, which was once enacted ultimate yr and prohibits using TikTok on government-issued gadgets.
A standalone model of Hawley’s invoice to prohibit TikTok on authorities gadgets handed the Senate with bipartisan strengthen in December following revelations from FBI Director Christopher Wray that Chinese officers are ready to “manipulate content, and if they want to, to use if for influence operations.”
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“TikTok is a Trojan Horse for the Chinese Communist Party. It’s a major security risk to the United States, and until it is forced to sever ties with China completely, it has no place on government devices,” Hawley mentioned in a commentary on the time. “States across the U.S. are banning TikTok on government devices. It’s time for Joe Biden and the Democrats to help do the same.”
“Sen. Hawley’s call for a total ban of TikTok takes a piecemeal approach to national security and a piecemeal approach to broad industry issues like data security, privacy, and online harms,” mentioned Brooke Oberwetter, a spokesperson for TikTok.
“We hope that he will focus his energies on efforts to address those issues holistically, rather than pretending that banning a single service would solve any of the problems he’s concerned about or make Americans any safer,” Oberwetter added.
In December, TikTok slammed Congress and the Biden management after Hawley’s invoice handed the Senate.
“It is troubling that rather than encouraging the administration to conclude its national security review of TikTok, some members of Congress have decided to push for politically motivated bans that will do nothing to advance the national security of the United States,” a TikTok spokesperson mentioned.
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Biden management officers, together with Wray and Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen, have warned Congress that the video sharing app poses “legitimate national security concerns.”
Wray testified to the Homeland Security Committee that it’s imaginable “the Chinese government could use it to control data collection on millions of users or control the recommendation algorithm, which could be used for influence operations if they so chose, or to control software on millions of devices, which gives the opportunity to potentially technically compromise personal devices.”
Various governors in a lot of states together with South Dakota, Virginia, New Hampshire, Texas and Georgia have additionally banned TikTok from authorities gadgets.
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Fox News’ Ronn Blitzer, Brooke Singman and Eric Revell contributed to this file.