You’ve heard the songs on the radio and the choreographed dances have flooded your social media. But now some New York officials are concerned about the budding origins of the social media app in China.
State Senator Chris Jacobs introduced legislation that would prohibit people from downloading or using TikTok on state-issued devices.
“At first glance, TikTok seems like a harmless tool for creating short videos with music, when in reality it is a data mining tool that violates our privacy and could compromise our security,” said Jacobs. “It is simply too easy to access the information it collects for the oppressive Chinese government waging a fierce economic war against our state and our country.”
Jacobs is a candidate for congress in the 27th district of Western New York.
TikTok has more than 800 million active users around the world and has quickly become one of the most widely used social apps worldwide.
It was first launched in 2016 in China by ByteDance. It was not until 2017 that TikTok merged with the app Musical.ly when it became a real success.
The app allows people to create, upload and share videos worldwide.
TikTok keeps track of user data such as IP addresses, location, browsing and search history, phone applications and file systems.
According to Jacobs’ office, the Department of Homeland Security, the Pentagon, the State Department, and the Transportation Security Administration prohibit their employees from using the app on government-issued devices.
“The importance of protecting our privacy and maintaining our security requires that we take swift and effective action to limit the reach of TikTok in our public and private domains,” said Jacobs.