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TikTok CEO testifies before US Congress amid data security concern


Shou Zi Chew, the CEO of TikTok, testified before the US Congress in light of mounting concerns and the possible Chinese government influence in the working of the social media giant.

Chew was subjected to tough questioninq as he tried to convince the House Energy and Commerce Committee that the short video platfom is taking “serious action” to alleviate US national security concerns.

The TikTok app, which is owned by the Chinese technology company Bytedance, has long maintained that it does not share data with the Chinese government and that it does not pose a risk to its 150 million users in the U.S. or share their data with the Chinese Communist Party.  Chew repeatedly emphasised this throughout the four-hour hearing.

In her line of enquiry, US lawmaker Debbie Lesko cited India and other nations that had lately outlawed TikTok in some capacity. “India banned TikTok in 2020. In March 21, a Forbes article revealed how data of Indian citizens who used TikTok remained accessible to employees at the company and its Beijing-based parent. A current TikTok employee told Forbes that nearly anyone with basic access to company tools can easily look up the closest contact and other sensitive information about any user,” Lesko told the house.

Back in 2020, Tiktok was banned in India along with 300 other Chinese apps over national security issues. The company ended its final chapter in India by firing its entire staff in the country last month.

New Zealand also banned the usage of TikTok on parliamentary devices last week. TikTok is facing similar scrutiny in the United States.

In December, the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on House Administration banned the app on all House-managed devices in the U.S. Following this, a partial or full ban on the Chinese app was imposed by several states in the United States, which has at least 100 million TikTok users. The company has been denying all the allegations and assuring the U.S. government that its users’ data cannot be accessed and content cannot be manipulated by the Communist Party or anyone else in its home country.

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