Once More Unto a Breach
I mean, depending on your outlook, this could be amazing. I’m just kidding, it’s not really an update that millions of people are going to want to hear. But, if you’re a fan of TikTok and currently living in the US, there could be a major change coming.
Recently there’s been a spat of issues with major app developers and applications having security concerns. It really blew up with Facebook, it led to TikTok being banned in India and now it may even spread to the US.
Of course, this would not be a small update. TikTok has an average daily user base of over 170 million users. 60 million of which currently reside in the US, so it’s no small number of people.
Unfortunately for TikTok, it has been investigated and been a major security concern, pretty much since it’s availability. Under the Trump administration, scrutiny into Chinese based products has become something of a pastime for them. Whether or not it’s always in public agreement, it’s been a tried measure over and over again.
Upon announcing that the US was considering banning the app, TikTok had its own response planned out.
“TikTok is led by an American CEO, with hundreds of employees and key leaders across safety, security, product, and public policy here in the U.S. We have no higher priority than promoting a safe and secure app experience for our users.”
Not the First Nor The Last Time
TikTok has been accused in the past of sharing user information. Something that has never been conclusively proven, but has been shared around quite a bit. Including on Network television, such as Fox News. Who claimed that TikTok shared user information with the Chinese Communist Party.
Naturally, TikTok has denied this claim time and time again, saying that it never has, nor ever will share user information. All that being said, TikTok is owned by a subsidiary of ByteDance, a Chinese based startup tech company. Maybe the concern isn’t immediately warranted, but it is easily exploited.
In TikTok’s favor, they actually removed the app from availability in Hong Kong. following changes made by the Chinese government that mandated you had to turn over user information if demanded. Millions of people active on Hong Kong’s Twitter, Facebook, Snapchat, TikTok etc, would be vulnerable.
Unfortunately for TikTok, they can’t stop their government from creating new laws that are directly detrimental to tech and social media. China’s new Internet Law mandates that you HAVE to turn over any data when/if requested by authorities. Regardless of who your parent company is, as long as you operate in China, you’re at risk.
This has, of course, led to several dozens of apps and companies being considered a security threat by the US.
Time Will Tell
Right now it is unclear what exactly will happen as far as TikTok is concerned. Considering how quick India was to ban the popular app among growing security concerns, it could very well go the same way in the US. Although, it is important to note that India banned it after a physical altercation in the Himalayas. So unless China directly attacks US soil, it probably won’t happen.
Especially considering that Facebook still operates in the US despite some pretty substantial evidence stacked against it. Sure there was an investigation, and it led to absolutely nothing save for a few solid memes.
That tends to be the larger issue surrounding topics like this with the US government and the people. A conversation is begun, opinions are thrown around, one side gets particularly heated about the topic, and nothing ends up changing. Does that mean that TikTok is in no danger? Absolutely not, they could very well end up being banned.
We just don’t believe that it will actually happen.