US authorities will block TikTok if the Chinese owner does

US authorities will block TikTok if the Chinese owner does not sell the American part of the business

Agency Bloomberg reported that US officials have asked the Chinese company ByteDance to sell assets related to the activities of the social network TikTok in the United States under threat of a ban on its activities. The country’s authorities fear China’s influence on the minds of US citizens through TikTok and the leakage of citizens’ personal information.

ByteDance’s management had previously considered selling its US TikTok-related assets or taking the company public. It was understood that the Chinese owners would keep a small part of the business without the right to influence management decisions.

TikTok officials continue to insist that the change of ownership will have little impact on information security and the best solution would be to transfer the infrastructure of the American segment of the social network to the control of a trusted organization or company like Oracle. Steps towards such a reorganization are already being taken, since corresponding agreements were made last year. TikTok has already invested $1.5 billion in this initiative, but, as mentioned, US authorities were skeptical about its feasibility.

The Wall Street Journal reported that ByteDance’s call for a spin-off of TikTok’s US business was backed by US President Joseph Biden. TikTok CEO Shou Zi Chew is due to address US lawmakers next week, who will take questions about ties to the Chinese government. TikTok itself views the disposal of American assets as a last resort, to be implemented if all other steps taken to ensure US national security are not recognized by the American side.


About the author

Robbie Elmers

Robbie Elmers is a staff writer for Tech News Space, covering software, applications and services.

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