New push in Washington to ban TikTok nationwide
WASHINGTON (Gray DC) - When we allow TikTok access to our cameras and microphones to record a video, we’re opening the door for complete access to what’s on our phone - even when we’re not using the app.
It may seem worth it for the chance to go viral, but it’s a whole lot of information that’s ending up in the hands of the Chinese government. That’s according to cyber security expert Matthew Curtin.
“If you are not paying for the product, you are the product,” said Curtin.
He explains that behind the viral dances, and latest trends, TikTok could be up to something sinister.
“It can be looking through your computer for credentials to log into your bank account. It can be looking through your files to see if there’s anything that shows a lot of skin that they might be able to blackmail you with.”
According to app data, there are an estimated 210 million Americans who use the app. Wallaroom media estimates the average user spends about an our an half per day scrolling videos.
“By having apps that are feeding information about people’s activity in their daily habits, intelligence is much easier to get,” said Curtin.
The concern over Chinese espionage has caused Maryland, South Dakota, South Carolina, Alabama and Texas to ban the app on government devices. Now, a group of Lawmakers in Washington are introducing a bill for a total ban nation-wide.
Marco Rubio who is sponsoring the bill said in a statement, “This isn’t about creative videos — this is about an app that is collecting data on tens of millions of American children and adults every day.”
Senator John Thune agrees.
“I think banning tiktok on any government agency platform is a wise thing to do,” said Thune, “Otherwise china is going to acquire and have access to enormous amounts of information”
TikTok released a statement saying
“Some members of Congress have decided to push for a politically-motivated ban that will do nothing to advance the national security of the United States,”
The White House has signaled they may be on board with the legislation - saying China’s attempt to leverage American data poses a national security risk.
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