Britain mentioned on Thursday it will ban TikTok on authorities telephones with speedy impact, a transfer that follows different Western nations who’ve barred the Chinese language-owned video app over safety issues.
“The security of sensitive government information must come first, so today we are banning this app on government devices. The use of other data-extracting apps will be kept under review,” Cupboard Workplace minister Oliver Dowden mentioned in an announcement.
TikTok has come below growing scrutiny because of fears that person knowledge from the app owned by Beijing-based firm ByteDance might find yourself within the arms of the Chinese language authorities, undermining Western safety pursuits.
The British authorities had requested the Nationwide Cyber Safety Centre to have a look at the potential vulnerability of presidency knowledge from social media apps and the dangers round how delicate info could possibly be accessed and used.
The USA, Canada, Belgium and the European Fee have already banned the app from official gadgets.
“Restricting the use of TikTok on government devices is a prudent and proportionate step following advice from our cyber security experts,” Dowden mentioned.
TikTok mentioned it was dissatisfied with the choice and had already begun taking steps to additional defend European person knowledge.
“We believe these bans have been based on fundamental misconceptions and driven by wider geopolitics, in which TikTok, and our millions of users in the UK, play no part,” a TikTok spokesperson mentioned.
“We remain committed to working with the government to address any concerns but should be judged on facts and treated equally to our competitors.”
Dowden instructed parliament authorities gadgets would now solely be capable of entry third-party apps from a pre-approved checklist.
The TikTok ban doesn’t the embody private gadgets of presidency staff or ministers and there can be restricted exemptions the place TikTok was required on authorities gadgets for work functions, he added.