U.S. government accuses TikTok of spying for Beijing

One of the flagship applications of the moment is a Chinese application, TikTok, an entertainment software that now has about 1 billion users per month.

For a while it is the most adored application by young people aged 12 to 20. This significant success of the Chinese application has not failed to attract the attention of the U.S. government. Indeed, he suspects the social network of being in the pay of the Chinese government.

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And to do so, two U.S. parliamentarians asked U.S. intelligence authorities to launch an investigation into the social network. The aim is to determine whether the latter, which is owned by businessmen, China may pose a certain threat to the security of the United States.

Reported by the Washington post, Democratic Senator Charles Schumer and Republican Senator Tom Cotton contacted U.S. Intelligence Chief Joseph Maguire to investigate Tik tok. "With more than 110 million downloads in the United States alone, TikTok is a potential counterintelligence threat that we cannot ignore. served the two members of parliament.

"Given these concerns, we call on the intelligence community to conduct an assessment of the national security risks posed by TikTok and other content platforms based in China operating in the United States and to inform Congress of these findings. ».

Distrust of the app is rooted in the fact that TikTok is owned by a company headquartered in Beijing. In addition, the requirement that Tik Tok's holding company submit to Chinese rules, especially on cooperation with the intelligence services, is of great concern to parliamentarians: "Security experts have expressed concern that China's intelligence, national security and cybersecurity law requires Chinese companies to support and cooperate with the intelligence services controlled by the Communist Party of China. ».

According to these parliamentarians Tik tok would be subject to the same rule of sound as its several applications to the social network in China. And if it does not disclose information or content related to the demonstration in Hong Kong or Tiananmen Square, not to mention the independence of Tibet. it's just going to be that the app can be used to influence political events in the United States as was the case in 2016 with the Russia and Donald Trump case, that so the Chinese company to use its application "as part of an artificial intelligence company powered by algorithms that 'learn' the interests and preferences of each user through repeated interaction. »

For its part, Chinese society has defended itself by meaning that its application does not work according to Chinese laws. U.S. user data is stored exclusively in the U.S. with a possible backup in Singapore. As a result, none of the application data is actually stored in China, thus freeing them from certain Chinese constraints and laws. She added: "The Chinese government has never asked us to remove content and we would not do so if asked (…) We are not influenced by any foreign government, including the Chinese government; TikTok does not operate in China, and we have no intention of doing so in the future. ».

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