New York City has banned TikTok on government-owned devices, citing security concerns over its parent company ByteDance’s alleged ties to the Chinese government.
On Wednesday, NYC ordered the ban and required agencies to remove the video from city-owned hardware within 30 days.
According to The Verge, New York City’s ban, which is effective immediately, was recommended by NYC Cyber Command following a security review of TikTok.
NYC Cyber Command, which focuses on cyber threats for the NYC Office of Technology and Innovation, says it found TikTok “posed a security threat to the city’s technical networks.”
Starting immediately, city employees are barred from downloading or using the app and accessing TikTok’s website from any city-owned devices. New York State had already banned TikTok on state-issued mobile devices.
“While social media is great at connecting New Yorkers with one another and the city, we have to ensure we are always using these platforms in a secure manner,” a New York City Hall spokesperson says in a statement to The Verge.
“NYC Cyber Command regularly explores and advances proactive measures to keep New Yorkers’ data safe.”
The Latest TikTok Ban
New York City has become the latest U.S. jurisdiction to ban TikTok on government-owned devices — joining a growing list of states, companies, and universities.
The bans have largely been restricted to official devices. However, in May, Montana officially became the first state to completely ban the Chinese-owned video app in the U.S.
TikTok, which is used by more than 150 million Americans, has faced growing calls from U.S. lawmakers for a nationwide ban over concerns about possible Chinese government influence. The Biden administration has demanded that the Chinese-owned TikTok be sold or be banned across the country.
Federal officials fear that American user data on TikTok could fall into the hands of the Chinese government, due to a law in China that compels firms to hand over information to Beijing if they are requested to do so.
TikTok has repeatedly stated that U.S. user data is not stored in China where those laws apply. And the company has sought to assure U.S. lawmakers that American user data is safe.
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