wordpress blog stats
Connect with us

Hi, what are you looking for?

US opens national security review of ByteDance’s Musical.ly acquisition

iPhone showing apps

The United States has opened a national security review of TikTok’s parent ByteDance over its $1 billion acquisition of short video app Musical.ly, reports Reuters. ByteDance did not seek the clearance of the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States, which reviews foreign acquisition deals for potential national security issues. The review also stems in part from the committee’s fears that the Chinese government might have access to TikTok’s data and user profiles, according to a CNBC report.

US Senators raise national security and censorship concerns against TikTok

U.S. Senators Chuck Schumer and Tom Cotton, on October 24, had called for an assessment of national security risks posed by TikTok and other China-based content platforms operating in the US. They said that China’s vague patchwork of intelligence, national security, and cybersecurity laws compel Chinese companies such as ByteDance to support and cooperate with intelligence work controlled by the Chinese Communist Party. The senators’ letter was addressed to Acting Director of National Intelligence Joseph Maguire.

“With over 110 million downloads in the U.S. alone, TikTok is a potential counterintelligence threat we cannot ignore,” the Senators had written.

“Questions have also been raised regarding the potential for censorship or manipulation of certain content. TikTok reportedly censors materials deemed politically sensitive to the Chinese Communist Party, including content related to the recent Hong Kong protests, as well as references to Tiananmen Square, Tibetan and Taiwanese independence, and the treatment of Uighurs,” the letter said. Schumer and Cotton further said that TikTok can be a potential target for foreign influence campaigns.

Before that, on October 9, Senator Marco Rubio had tweeted that he would urge CFIUS to review ByteDance’s acquisition of Musical.y. “Ample & growing evidence exists that TikTok’s platform for western markets, including the U.S., are censoring content in line with #China’s communist government directives,” his tweet read.

Similar concerns have been raised in India against TikTok and ByteDance

Concerns over ByteDance’s and TikTok’s potential ties with the Chinese government have also been raised in India. Multiple Parliamentarians have called for banning the app accusing it of spreading fake news and “causing ruptures in the fabric our society”. Congress MP Shashi Tharoor said that ByteDance, TikTok and Helo run a network of “paid influencers” and can “impact our democratic process”. RSS affiliate Swadeshi Jagran Manch has called TikTok a threat to India’s national security.

In April, TikTok was banned in India by the Madras High Court, which said it was spreading pornography, potentially exposing children to sexual predators, and adversely impacting its the mental health of its users. The ban, however, was lifted on April 24.

The Election Commission of India (EC) had asked to meet TikTok officials, before the 2019 general elections, to talk about taking down content which violated its guidelines.

Go Deeper: Why they want TikTok banned in India

Advertisement. Scroll to continue reading.

Written By

MediaNama’s mission is to help build a digital ecosystem which is open, fair, global and competitive.

Views

News

India and US come to terms on how to deal with the equalisation levy in light of the impending Global Tax Deal.

News

Find out how people’s health data is understood to have value and who can benefit from that value.

News

The US and other countries' retreat from a laissez-faire approach to regulating markets presents India with a rare opportunity.

News

When news that Walmart would soon accept cryptocurrency turned out to be fake, it also became a teachable moment.

News

The DSCI's guidelines are patient-centric and act as a data privacy roadmap for healthcare service providers.

You May Also Like

News

Google has released a Google Travel Trends Report which states that branded budget hotel search queries grew 179% year over year (YOY) in India, in...

Advert

135 job openings in over 60 companies are listed at our free Digital and Mobile Job Board: If you’re looking for a job, or...

News

Rajesh Kumar* doesn’t have many enemies in life. But, Uber, for which he drives a cab everyday, is starting to look like one, he...

News

By Aroon Deep and Aditya Chunduru You’re reading it here first: Twitter has complied with government requests to censor 52 tweets that mostly criticised...

MediaNama is the premier source of information and analysis on Technology Policy in India. More about MediaNama, and contact information, here.

© 2008-2021 Mixed Bag Media Pvt. Ltd. Developed By PixelVJ

Subscribe to our daily newsletter
Name:*
Your email address:*
*
Please enter all required fields Click to hide
Correct invalid entries Click to hide

© 2008-2021 Mixed Bag Media Pvt. Ltd. Developed By PixelVJ