UNITED STATES. Washington D.C: In light of mounting U.S. national security concerns, the top executive of TikTok will inform legislators that the Chinese-owned short video app, which has more than 150 million American users, has never shared user data with the Chinese government and never will.
Chew provided a written statement, which the House of Representatives Energy and Commerce Committee published on Tuesday. He claims this in his testimony, “TikTok has never shared, or received a request to share, U.S. user data with the Chinese government. Nor would TikTok honour such a request if one were ever made.” He continues by stating that no federal, state, or local entities possess or have jurisdiction over ByteDance, the parent company of TikTok.
According to a report last week, TikTok’s Chinese owners were forced to sell their shares in the app by the Biden administration, otherwise, the app would have risked being banned in the United States.
Under the name “Project Texas,” TikTok claims to have invested more than $1.5 billion in what it refers to as rigorous data security procedures. The company has also reportedly tried to persuade politicians and the Biden administration to endorse the initiative. In 2020, ByteDance was given the unanimous recommendation to divest TikTok by the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS), a significant national security authority.
According to Chew’s evidence, 60% of ByteDance is owned by international institutional investors like Blackrock, General Atlantic, and Sequoia, while 20% is owned by their employees, “many of whom are Americans.”
“While users in the United States represent 10% of our global community, their voice accounts for 25% of the total views around the world,” Chew’s testimony says. Chew says that the most recent versions of the app do not record exact or close-to-exact GPS data from users in the United States.
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