TikTok downloads will soon be banned in the US, Trump administration announces

Justice Department says We Chat users won’t be penalized under Trump’s executive order		
		
	Catherine Shu

			@catherineshu	 
		2 days

As a result, the New York Times reports that US downloads of the short-form video app will be banned after Sunday night.

Under the current proposal from Oracle, the US -based company wouldn't actually buy TikTok outright, but instead act as a "security partner" to ensure that user data from Americans wasn't compromised.

TikTok has approximately 100 million users in the United States, but claim they don't store U.S. user data in China or give users' data to the Beijing government.

Last month, Trump signed an executive order to ban TikTok and WeChat by September 15 unless the ownership of the two Chinese companies changed to American. It has about 100 million users in the U.S., and around 800 million worldwide.

Oracle's stake of TikTok if a sale is approved will be less than 20 percent, with Walmart also taking a piece of a newly formed company as a partner in the deal, CNBC reported Thursday.

U.S. WeChat users "can have no reasonable claim that their speech is "chilled" when their speech is not subject to criminal or civil penalties", the government said in the filing. For WeChat, use of certain functions including money transfer or mobile payment will no longer be allowed in the U.S.

From September 20, for WeChat and from November 12, for TikTok, the USA has banned any provision of internet hosting services enabling the functioning or optimisation of the mobile application in the United States; content delivery network services enabling the functioning or optimisation of the mobile application in the US.

TikTok employees based in the U.S. will still be able to earn their salaries and benefits despite the ban. WeChat is owned by Chinese tech firm Tencent which says that less than 2% of the app's revenue is generated in the U.S.

ByteDance says proposal on TikTok still needs China, U.S. approvals
Trump has repeatedly insisted that any sale of TikTok's U.S. operations would have to include a substantial payment to the U.S. Oracle has thrown a wrench in the process: It's seeking a deal in which it would not become TikTok's owner.

"We have taken significant action to combat China's malicious collection of American citizens' personal data", said US Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross in a press release on Friday.

The administration is giving TikTok until November 12 before it's dealt the same restrictions as WeChat.

It follows an executive order from President Donald Trump, forcing U.S. app stores such as Apple and Google to remove TikTok and another app called WeChat.

But the Commerce Department said that if national security concerns over TikTok were resolved before then, the order may be lifted.

Also banned after Sunday will be USA downloads of WeChat, China's extremely popular Swiss Army Knife of an app with over one billion people in China using it as a browser, and a messaging app.

ByteDance still needs Trump's approval to stave off a US ban.

According to reports from Reuters, TikTok will be removed from app stores on Sunday, September 20 should the deal fail to be finalized before that date, meaning users who would like to download the app after that date will be unable to. Americans will still be able to use WeChat for payments in China, he said.

TikTok says it does not store U.S. user data in China and that it would not give user data to the government. TikTok has repeatedly said it is not a national security threat.

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