New York City has banned TikTok on government official’s devices amidst cybersecurity concerns.
A spokesperson for New York’s City Hall, Jonah Allon, said in a statement that the city’s Cyber Command “determined that the TikTok application posed a security threat to the city’s technical networks.”
Government officials will have 30 days to remove the app from any devices they use for work.
New York City’s ban comes just after a Reuters survey found that almost half of American adults support a country-wide ban on TikTok.
Montana became the first US state to ban TikTok back in May this year.
Since then, the UK, Australia, New Zealand and France have all followed suit to ban TikTok on government devices.
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Montana’s blanket ban on the app is facing challenges from TikTok and tech industry organisations over free speech concerns.
Speaking in a joint court filing, trade association Net Choice and tech coalition Chamber of Progress stated that Montana’s attempt to cut its citizens off from the “global network of TikTok users ignores and undermines the structure, design and purpose of the internet.”
The value of social media deals has also been falling as platforms face greater scrutiny and tighter advertising regulations.
The value of social media deals declined by 64% from its peak in 2020. The majority of these deals took place in Northern America and Asia-Pacific continents.
Just recently TikTok has changed its advertising to placate the EU’s Digital Services Act, which means that it will no longer show valuable targeted advertising to its younger users.
TikTok CEO Shou Zi Chew has already defended the app in March 2023 before Congress.
Reiterating that the app did not pose a security threat due to its Chinese ownership, Chew stated a nation-wide ban would instead “silence the voices of over 150 million Americans”.
Chew claimed that ByteDance, the company that developed TikTok, was not “owned or controlled by the Chinese government.”
As more states ban the use of TikTok on government phones, worries over an increasingly splintered internet could come to fruition.
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