You may have heard about the app TikTok but if you work for the Texas government, you are banned from using it according to Governor Greg Abbott.
On Tuesday, December 7, 2022, he issued an order forbidding Texas government employees from using TikTok. If you don’t know, TikTok is one of the fastest-growing social media apps.
The problem is the app was created in China and last year it was downloaded 656 million times. Through the third quarter of 2022, TikTok was downloaded 571 million times. TikTok was downloaded over 1 billion times on the Google play store.
Governor Abbott wrote letters to Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick, Speaker Dad Phelan, and state agency leaders on the safety and cybersecurity of Texans.
One of the letters said:
“TikTok harvests vast amounts of data from its users’ devices—including when, where, and how they conduct Internet activity—and offers this trove of potentially sensitive information to the Chinese government.”
“While TikTok has claimed that it stores U.S. data within the U.S., the company admitted in a letter to Congress that China-based employees can have access to U.S. data. It has also been reported that ByteDance planned to use TikTok location information to surveil individual American citizens. Further, under China’s 2017 National Intelligence Law, all businesses are required to assist China in intelligence work including data sharing, and TikTok’s algorithm has already censored topics politically sensitive to the Chinese Communist Party, including the Tiananmen Square protests.”
TikTok is owned by the Chinese government which employs Chinese Communist party members.
Governor Abbott directed state leaders to ban employees from downloading and using TikTok on any government device including cell phones, laptops, and desktop computers by January 15, 2023.
Abbott is doing more than just fighting the border crisis. He's trying to protect you and your personal information.
More details about the TikTok ban are provided in this video:
Other states have issued similar orders restricting TikTok including Maryland, South Dakota, South Carolina, and Nebraska.
What do you think about Governor Abbott banning TikTok?