US Passes Bill That Could Ban TikTok over Security Concerns

The US House of Representatives has passed a bill to prohibit TikTok unless the app separates from its Chinese parent firm, ByteDance.

According to CNN, senators voted 352 in favor of the new law and 65 against it on Wednesday, demonstrating a rare moment of bipartisan cooperation.

The MPs who supported the bill stated that the video-sharing software constituted a national security risk.

They contended that the Chinese government may utilize its intelligence laws to force ByteDance to hand over the data of US app users.

If passed, the law would oblige ByteDance to sell the software within five months or have it removed from the Apple and Google app stores in the United States.

Mike Johnson, a Republican House Speaker, stated that the vote “demonstrates Congress’ opposition to China’s attempts to spy on and manipulate Americans, as well as our resolve to deter our enemies.”

“I urge the senate to pass this bill and send it to the president so he can sign it into law,” he added in a statement.

The White House announced that President Joe Biden will sign the Protecting Americans from Foreign Adversary Controlled Applications Act.

White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre urged Senate members to take “swift action” on the TikTok measure.

Jean-Pierre further stated that the bill will have no effect on the United States-China relationship.

“We will continue to work on our relationship with China. “That will not stop,” Jean-Pierre remarked.

“But the president has always been clear: when it comes to our national security and data coming from Americans, we are always going to make sure that we are addressing those threats that we face.”

TikTok responded in a statement, calling the measure “an act of bullying and an attack on the constitutional right to freedom of expression”.

“This process was secret and the bill was jammed through for one reason: it is a ban,” the statement goes on to say.

“We are hopeful that the Senate will consider the facts, listen to their constituents, and realize the impact on the economy, 7 million small businesses, and the 170 million Americans who use our service.”

In 2022, the US House of Representatives instructed its staff to remove TikTok from all house-issued mobile devices.



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