State and federal lawmakers are beginning to push back against the use of TikTok on federally issued-devices. On Monday, New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy became the 21st U.S. state to ban the use of the popular social media app on government-owned devices. Similar to other states that have taken similar action, lawmakers in the Garden State are concerned about the potential of the Chinese government’s ability to use the Bytedance app to obtain valuable information.
“Bolstering cybersecurity is critical to protecting the overall safety and welfare of our State,” Murphy stated.
“The proactive and preventative measures that we are implementing today will ensure the confidentiality, integrity, and safety of information assets managed by New Jersey State government. This decisive action will ensure the cybersecurity of the State is unified against actors who may seek to divide us.”
Shortly thereafter, Ohio joined New Jersey in banning the use of TikTok on government-issued devices. Ohio Governor Mike DeWine signed an executive order that claims the ban is essential to “maintaining the cybersecurity of Ohio state government.”
“Social media applications and platforms operating in China engage in surreptitious data privacy and cybersecurity practices to include collecting personal information, behavioral use data, biometric data, and other data contained on the devices of its users,” DeWine’s executive order reads.
“These social media applications and platforms are known to directly or indirectly act as an intelligence gathering mechanism for the CCP by sharing sensitive personal and business information and data obtained from its users and their devices with the CCP.”