FCC Commissioner Carr Says US Should Ban TikTok

Raising concerns about how the China-owned app handles the data of American users, a commissioner at the Federal Communications Commission on Tuesday called on the US government to ban TikTok.

The Chinese social media giant is in the middle of negotiations with the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS) about the possibility to continue business in the US if its Chinese parent company ByteDance sells it to an American company.

Republican Brendan Carr, one of five commissioners of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), stressed that the fast-growing app TikTok should be banned in the US, citing its alleged inability to secure the data of US-based users and the possibility of data flows to China that could compromise national security.

TikTok spokesperson Brooke Oberwetter emphasized that the company is confident it’s on a path to reach an agreement with the US Government that will satisfy all reasonable national security concerns.

Carr, whose party lacks control of the commission, called on CFIUS since the FCC lacks jurisdiction over the matter and couldn’t do much to prevent the company from operating in the US.

Back in 2020, the Trump administration tried to ban TikTok but it eventually ended up calling on ByteDance to sell the app to a US company, something that never took place.

Carr’s remarks come less than a week before the midterm elections in the US after which further steps to ban or limit the app might be taken by the new Congress in which GOP hopes to win the majority.

He stressed that there is no world with sufficient protection on the data that can prevent US users’ data from finding its way into the hands of the Chinese Communist Party.

Oberwetter confirmed in a statement that Commissioner Carr is not involved in the app’s negotiations with the US government, noting that he’s apparently expressing views independent of his role as an FCC commissioner.

The FCC, however, is reportedly considering other initiatives, such as restricting the sale of China-produced telecommunications gear over data privacy concerns.

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