(USNewsMag.com) – Utah has become the latest state to ban government employees from using Tik Tok on their state-owned devices, following the trend that began with South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem (R) late last month. Other states that have followed suit include Alabama, Texas, Maryland, and South Carolina.
TikTok is a popular social media platform, racking up more than 100 million active users in the US alone. Many Gen Z and younger users receive more of their news and other relevant information from the app than from other sources.
But why all of a sudden now? And why did no one listen to President Donald Trump when he warned about this two years ago? Even Joe Biden moved to undo Trump’s ban – among other things – simply out of petty politics.
The states that have recently begun to prohibit the app on state government devices cite concerns involving cybersecurity. They are specifically concerned with threats from China-based entities and the increased access they have to the data belonging to American citizens.
This is very concerning. It’s gotten so bad that even Buzzfeed had to admit Trump was right. Audio and statements from Tik Tok employees and executives revealed that everything on the app “is seen in China.”
Kristi Noem, who made it a criminal offense to download the app on a state-owned device, is the only one to have taken an additional restrictive step in ensuring that no state employee would have their hands on this app.
Nationwide, Republicans Marco Rubio (FL) and Mike Gallagher (WI) introduced legislation that would ban the app completely, as well as any other social media company managed by Chinese-affiliated companies that ultimately report to the Chinese Communist Party (CCP). The bill has not reached any definitive conclusion. However, the Senate unanimously approved a similarly introduced bill on Wednesday, which would ban the app from being downloaded on federal devices effective immediately.
It seems that now even the FBI and Biden’s own admin are warming up to the idea that maybe the federal government should be scrutinizing social media platforms with more intensity, especially if they are being monitored by other foreign entities. It would be interesting to see President Joe Biden ultimately prove Trump right.
Vianca Rodriguez, Independent Political Analyst
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