FCC commissioner calls on Google and Apple to BAN TikTok because it ‘harvests swaths of sensitive data’ – and the tech giants have until July 8 to remove the app or explain why they chose not to
- Brendan Carr, commissioner of the FCC, is urging Google and Apple to remove TikTok from their app stores
- Carr has sent the firms a letter citing numerous reasons, such as lawsuits against TikTok
- A report from BuzzFeed News this month is what made Carr reach out to Google and Apple
- The report includes internal TikTok meets where employees discuss Beijing-based employees are repeatedly accessing US user data
- Carr says this is a serious national security threat and is giving the companies until July 8 to remove TikTok or explain why they did not comply
Carr included a letter to Google CEO Sundar Pichai and Apple CEO Tim Cook, expressing why TikTok needs to be removed, citing a report from last week that ‘shed fresh light on the serious national security threats posed by TikTok.
And he is giving the tech giants until July 8 to remove TikTok or explain why they chose not comply.
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Brendan Carr, commissioner of the FCC, posted on Twitter urging the tech giants to remove the video sharing platform ‘from their app stores for its pattern of surreptitious data practices’
The report, published by BuzzFeed News, highlights leaked audio from more than 80 internal TikTok meetings that reveal Chinese-based employees have repeatedly accessed US user data.
‘It is clear that TikTok poses an unacceptable national security risk due to its extensive data harvesting being combined with Beijing’s apparently unchecked access it that sensitive data, Carr wrote in the letter.
‘But it is also clear that TikTok’s pattern of conduct and misrepresentation regarding the unfettered access that persons in Beijing have to sensitive US user data puts it out of compliance with the policies that both of your companies require every app to adhere to as a condition of remaining available on your app store.’
DailyMail.com has contacted TikTok, Google and Apple for comment and has yet to receive a response.
Carr included a letter to Google CEO Sundar Pichai and Apple CEO Tim Cook, expressing why TikTok needs to be removed, citing a report from last week that ‘shed fresh light on the serious national security threats posed by TikTok
The letter continues with ‘some concerning’ evidence to why the China-owned app should be removed
The letter continues with ‘some concerning’ evidence to why the China-owned app should be removed.
This includes an incident in March 2020 when researchers discovered the app, through Apple’s App store, was accessing users’ sensitive data – passwords, cryptocurrency wallet addresses and personal messages.
Carr also notes that several US military branches have banned TikTok on government issued devices and has urged personal to remove the app from their personal smartphones.
It also cites TikTok’s decision in 2021 to pay $92 million to settle dozens of lawsuits that accuse the app of collecting personal data without the user’s consent – and most of these users were minors – and selling it off to advertisers.
The letter also cites the BuzzFeed report that surfaced this month.
Carr also notes that several US military branches have banned TikTok on government issued devices and has urged personal to remove the app from their personal smartphones
Carr is giving the tech giants until July 8 to remove TikTok or explain why they chose not comply
‘The BuzzFeed News investigation identified a ‘Master Admin’ located in Beijing that ‘has access to everything’ despite TikTok’s claims about storing sensitive data in the US,’ Carr wrote.
The recordings obtained by BuzzFeed News, and reported on by Emily Baker-White, focus on concerns made by former President Donald Trump while he was in office.
In August 2020, Trump signed an executive order that would ban TikTok and the Chinese chat app WeChat in the US.
The order stated that TikTok’s ‘data collection threatens to allow the Chinese Communist Party access to Americans’ personal and proprietary information.’
President Joe Biden last year revoked executive orders from Trump and produced a new executive order that nixed the unimplemented ban on TikTok and called for ‘an evidence-based analysis to address the risks’ from internet applications controlled by foreign entities.
TikTok has acknowledged access to its user data has been a problem.