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Joe Biden drops Donald Trump’s US Tiktok ban as officials order new Chinese tech review

Mr Trump targeted the Chinese social media giants arguing their influence could undermine US national security. However the White House has dropped this effort, and is instead launching a review into the behaviour of Chinese social media companies.

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Joe Biden has sent the Commerce Department an executive order instructing it to conduct an “evidence based” investigation into China based apps.

They are worried US citizens personal data could be compromised by companies close to the Chinese state.

Mr Trump attempted to ban TikTok in the summer of 2020 using executive orders.

They said the company must be banned from operating on national security grounds unless it would accept greater American control over its US operation.

This led to a takeover bid by Oracle and Walmart, two giant US corporations.

The proposed ban was temporarily blocked following a legal dispute.

TikTok had been hoping the US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit would throw out Mr Trump’s order in its entirety.

The US Commerce Department had been conducting a review, into whether Mr Trump’s security concerns about TikTok justified the proposed ban.

It was expected an update would be given later this week.

Speaking to The Verge a leading administration official admitted the White House still has concerns about Chinese apps.

They said: “The administration is committed to promoting an open, interoperable, reliable, and secure internet and to protecting human rights online and offline, and to supporting a vibrant global digital economy.

“The challenge that we’re addressing with this executive order is that certain countries, including China, do not share these commitments or values and are instead working to leverage digital technologies and American data in ways that present unacceptable national security risks.”

Last week President Biden signed a separate executive order extending a Trump era ban on US investment in companies with Chinese military ties.

This listed 59 Chinese firms, some of which were accused of producing surveillance equipment used against Uyghur Muslims.

China has been accused of sending more than a million Uyghurs, and other minorities, to re-education camps in the far-west of the country.

Human rights abuses; including forced labour, compulsory abortions and sexual abuse have been reported in the camps.

Beijing denies allegations of abuse and claims the facilities are designed to combat religious extremism.

President Trump’s call to ban TikTok came after thousands of activists used the platform to disrupt one of his rallies.

In June 2020 TikTok users conspired to book tickets on mass for a Trump rally in Tulsa, then failed to turn up.

The result was hundreds of empty seats when the president made his address.

Speaking to The Times one activist explained she had booked two tickets, and got her parents to order two more.

She commented: “Trump has been actively trying to disenfranchise millions of Americans in so many ways, and to me, this was the protest I was able to perform.”

Source:

www.express.co.uk

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