TikTok’s ‘Security Threat’ Prompts NYC Government to Ban on Devices

The government of New York City has recently decided to ban TikTok on all devices owned by the city. This decision comes as a result of security concerns regarding the popular video-sharing app’s parent company, ByteDance, and its alleged connections to the Chinese government. In order to comply with the ban, city agencies will have to remove the app from their hardware within the next 30 days.

According to reports, the ban was suggested by the NYC Cyber Command following a security review of TikTok. The command, which focuses on cyber threats for the NYC Office of Technology and Innovation, discovered that TikTok posed a security risk to the city’s technical networks.

In light of this finding, city employees are now prohibited from downloading or using TikTok on any city-owned devices. This measure is an additional step to the existing ban already in place for state-issued mobile devices in New York.

A spokesperson from New York City Hall emphasized the importance of using social media platforms securely, particularly when it comes to protecting the data of New Yorkers. The Cyber Command is continuously working on proactive measures to ensure the safety of user data, as social media is essential for connecting people and the city.

New York City’s ban on TikTok follows a trend seen across different jurisdictions in the United States. Numerous states, companies, and universities have implemented similar bans, mainly limited to official devices. Nevertheless, Montana made history in May by becoming the first state to completely ban TikTok in the whole country.

The reason behind these actions is the growing concern over potential Chinese government influence due to TikTok being owned by a Chinese company.

TikTok is a widely used app that boasts more than 150 million American users. However, its popularity has caught the attention of U.S. lawmakers who harbor worries about the safety of American user data. The Biden administration has called for either the sale of TikTok or a nationwide ban.

One of the concerns revolves around a Chinese law that obligates companies to provide information to the Beijing government upon request, potentially compromising American user data.

TikTok has consistently asserted that U.S. user data is not stored in China, therefore not subject to Chinese laws. The company has been active in reassuring U.S. lawmakers about the security of American user data and their commitment to keeping it safe. Nonetheless, the controversies surrounding TikTok persist, warranting the bans implemented by various entities across the United States.

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