House approves bill with potential to ban TikTok

by | Mar 13, 2024

The House voted 352-65 Wednesday to pass a bill that would result in a nationwide ban of the popular video app TikTok if its China-based owner fails to divest, reflecting lawmakers' concerns that the company's current ownership structure poses a national security threat. One lawmaker voted present.

Lawmakers argue that ByteDance, the parent company of TikTok, is under the influence of the Chinese government. This concern arises from Chinese national security laws that mandate organizations to cooperate with intelligence gathering efforts.

As TikTok has over 150 million American users, there are apprehensions that the Chinese government could demand access to the data of TikTok's U.S. consumers at any point in time.

Prior to the House vote, a senior national security official in the Biden administration conducted a closed-door briefing with lawmakers on Tuesday to address TikTok and its national security implications. Lawmakers are grappling with balancing these security concerns against the desire to avoid restricting free speech online.

Biden has stated his intent to sign the bill if Congress passes the measure.

Source: AP News

Source: The Hill

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