Secretary of State Mike Pompeo suggested the possible ban during an interview on Monday with Fox News’ Laura Ingraham, who posed the app as a national security threat.
The U.S.’ possible TikTok ban comes after the Indian government announced it would be banning the app, as well as other Chinese social media apps like WeChat. There have also been reports that the Australian government is looking into a ban.
“Whether it was the problems of having Huawei technology in your infrastructure, we’ve gone all over the world and we’re making a real progress getting that out,” Pompeo continued. “We declared ZTE a danger to American national security. We’ve done all of these things. With respect to Chinese apps on peoples’ cell phones, the United States will get this one right, too.”
TikTok, which is owned by Beijing-based company ByteDance, has skyrocketed in popularity in the U.S., primarily among Gen Z users who use the app to record themselves dancing to today’s popular music or to participate in different TikTok challenges. Four years since launch, the app has a total download count of 2 billion, according to Sensor Tower, a mobile app data provider.
When Ingraham asked if Americans should be downloading TikTok, Pompeo responded with: “Only if you want your private information in the hands of the Chinese communist party.”
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