Washington: The Biden administration has demanded that TikTok's Chinese owners divest their stakes in the popular video app or face a possible US ban, the company told Reuters this week.
The move follows the introduction of a new US legislation that would allow the White House to ban TikTok or other foreign-based technologies if they pose a national security risk.
Other countries and entities have also elected to ban the app.
TikTok is owned by China-based ByteDance, the world's most valuable start-up. Numerous countries have raised concerns over its proximity to the Chinese government and hold over user data across the world.
We call on the countries concerned to recognise the objective facts, effectively respect the market economy and provide a non-discriminatory environment for all companies.
Here is a list of countries and entities that have implemented a partial or complete ban on TikTok: New Zealand became the latest country to target TikTok, imposing a ban on the use of the app on devices with access to the parliamentary network amid cybersecurity concerns.
United Kingdom Would ban TikTok on government phones with immediate effect, and asked the National Cyber Security Centre to look at the potential vulnerability of government data from social media apps and risks around how sensitive information could be accessed and used.
Scotland TikTok will be removed from Scottish Parliament phones and devices amid security concerns, Sky News reports.
India Banned TikTok and dozens of other apps by Chinese developers on all devices in June 2020, claiming that they were potentially harmful to the country's security and integrity.
Afghanistan Is in talks to ban TikTok and video game PUBG, with the Taliban claiming those were leading Afghan youths "astray." Pakistan Banned TikTok at least four times, with the latest ban ending in November, over what the government said was immoral and indecent content on the app.
Belgium Belgian federal government employees will no longer be allowed to use TikTok on their work phones, Belgian Prime Minister Alexander De Croo said on March 10.
Canada The nation has banned TikTok on government-issued devices due to security risks.
Taiwan Banned TikTok and some other Chinese apps on state-owned devices and in December 2022 launched a probe into the social media app over suspected illegal operations on the island United States The US government's Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS), a powerful national security body, in 2020 unanimously recommended ByteDance divest TikTok because of fears that user data could be passed on to China's government.
In early March, legislators from both major US parties introduced a bill to ban the popular app in the United States.
Congress previously passed a bill in December 2022 to ban TikTok on federal devices.
US Educational Institutions Boise State University, University of Oklahoma, University of Texas-Austin, and West Texas A&M University are some of the schools to ban TikTok on university devices and Wi-Fi networks.
US States Texas, Maryland, Alabama and Utah are among over 25 states that have issued orders to staff against using TikTok on government devices.
European Commission and European Parliament The European Union's executive arm, the European Commission, has issued an order to ban the use of popular Chinese app TikTok on its staff's phones due to cybersecurity concerns. Separately, the European Parliament also banned the app from staff phones.
Governments are worried TikTok’s owner, ByteDance, might give browsing history or other data about users to China’s government or promote propaganda and disinformation.
“We call on the countries concerned to recognize the objective facts, effectively respect the market economy” and provide “a non-discriminatory environment" for all companies, said foreign ministry spokesperson Wang Wenbin.
TikTok is one focus of conflicts between China and other governments over technology and security that are disrupting processor chip, smartphone and other industries.
Legislators and employees in New Zealand’s Parliament will be prohibited from having TikTok ’s app on phones, the government said Friday. Britain announced a ban Thursday on TikTok on all government phones.
In February, the White House told federal agencies to delete TikTok from government-issued mobile devices within 30 days . Congress, the US armed forces and more than half of American state governments prohibit use of the app by their employees.
India has banned TikTok and dozens of other Chinese apps, including the WeChat message service, on security and privacy grounds.
The United States also has imposed restrictions on access by Chinese companies to processor chip and other technology on security and human rights grounds.
The Chinese government accused Washington of spreading false information about TikTok following a report by The Wall Street Journal that US authorities were considering a ban if ByteDance doesn’t sell the company.
The ruling Communist Party blocks most internet users in China from seeing TikTok and thousands of social media and other websites. ByteDance operates a sister short-video service, Douyin, that can be seen in China.