USA bans TikTok and WeChat

U.S. President Donald Trump has unveiled sweeping bans on U.S. transactions with China’s ByteDance, owner of video-sharing app TikTok, and Tencent, operator of messenger app WeChat. The executive orders, in this regard, will go into effect in 45 days. The move comes come after the Trump administration said it was stepping up efforts to purge “untrusted” Chinese apps from U.S. digital networks and called TikTok and WeChat “significant threats”. TikTok has 100 million users in the United States.

The hugely popular Tiktok has come under fire from U.S. lawmakers and the administration over national security concerns surrounding data collection, amid growing distrust between Washington and Beijing.

The US President cited restrictions on use of TikTok on federal government phones by the US armed forces, homeland security and the transportation security administration. He also mentioned about India’s ban on Chinese mobile applications to build the case for his own set of restrictions. “The Government of India recently banned the use of TikTok and other Chinese mobile applications throughout the country; in a statement, India’s Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology asserted that they were “stealing and surreptitiously transmitting users’ data in an unauthorized manner to servers which have locations outside India,” President Trump said.

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