May 23, 2024

Now also Austria: the Ministry of the Interior is considering banning TikTok

Several countries such as the USA and Canada have shown the way – now the Austrian Ministry of the Interior is also considering banning the ‘TikTok’ app on official devices.

IT experts at the Ministry of Home Affairs are currently examining the status of risks arising from the video application. The possible ban on the company’s cell phones was caused by security concerns. The app from Chinese group Bytedance has long been criticized for its lack of data security.

Security authorities fear that the Chinese government in Beijing will control the data of foreign users. They can also manipulate the program’s recommendation algorithms in order to exert influence. TikTok and the Chinese government have long denied these allegations.

Some Austrian politicians are active on TikTok to appeal to young voters in particular. For example, Minister of Justice Alma Zadic (the Greens), Chairman of the National Council Wolfgang Sobotka, Minister of State Claudia Blackolm (both ÖVP) or member of the National Council NEOS Yannick Shetty.

TikTok banned in several countries

The social media app, which is especially popular among young people, is now under attack in some countries. In the past few days, Canada, the USA and the EU Commission have instructed their employees to delete TikTok from their work devices due to security concerns. Similar steps are also being considered in Italy.

As confirmed by a spokeswoman for the Brussels authorities last Thursday, the video application of a Chinese company must also be removed from private devices on which applications from the European Union Commission are used by March 15.

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“a spy balloon in her phone”

At the same time, the US House of Representatives Foreign Affairs Committee was scheduled to vote on Tuesday on a bill that would allow TikTok to be banned on all smartphones in the US.

“Anyone who has downloaded TikTok to their device has given the Chinese Communist Party a backdoor to all their personal information,” committee chair Mike McCall warned. “It’s a spy balloon in her phone.”

While TikTok’s parent company Bytedance did not initially respond, China’s foreign ministry condemned the ban in a statement: “We firmly oppose the United States’ wrong practice of generalizing the concept of national security, abusing state power, and improper targeting of companies from other countries’ suppression.” .

According to the Wall Street Journal, TikTok wants to respond to the ban plans – the American business will be restructured in order to remain active in the United States of America.