In 2020, when Trump voiced concerns about TikTok, he was ridiculed by the media. CNN published an article stating that the move established a “dangerous precedent for democracy.” The 45th president was also cruelly mocked by late-night comedians, and he was also challenged in court.
Concerns over TikTok and its China-based company ByteDance come from Beijing’s legal reality. Fears of industrial or personal espionage via applications like TikTok have been sparked by China’s national security legislation, which may compel international and local enterprises operating within its borders to disclose their data with the government.
ByteDance has denied that the Chinese communist government has access to any data obtained by the social media app, saying that the user data of American citizens is solely maintained in the United States.
Joe Biden swore to always listen to the intelligence community, but he supported TikTok as a political tool before the midterm elections, allowing his government to send some TikTok employees to the United States on special immigrant visas. Sen. Tom Cotton said in a letter earlier this month that the Department of Homeland Security authorized more than 570 H-1B visas for foreign nationals to work at the California headquarters of Chinese parent firm ByteDance, where they can access sensitive data on U.S. users.
In July, however, ByteDance confirmed that non-U.S. personnel had access to U.S. customer data and that it is attempting to cooperate with the Biden administration to resolve concerns over its data privacy standards. “We are convinced that we are on a route to completely satisfy any reasonable U.S. national security concerns,” the business wrote in a statement to National Public Radio earlier this month, clearly admitting that they were not previously on this path and that the worries are valid.
Now, the intelligence community acknowledges that Trump was accurate.
Federal Communications Commissioner Brendan Carr urged a comprehensive U.S. ban on the short-form video app, while FBI Director Christopher Wray said the government believes China’s Communist Party (CCP) may potentially use TikTok to influence or control American users or their devices.
Wray told the House Homeland Security Committee, when questioned about TikTok, that there are “plenty of reason by itself to be extremely concerned.”
Two Republicans, Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida and Rep. Mike Gallagher of Wisconsin, have now presented a measure that would prohibit Chinese social media businesses like TikTok from functioning in the United States.
The fact that it took two years to notice Trump’s worries with TikTok is a textbook example of how anti-Trump establishment prejudice pervades so many American discussions, even when national security is at peril, according to a prominent congressman on cyber security matters.
“Everybody, both on the defense side and on the commercial side, tells us about what the Chinese are doing, and how effective they’re being,” Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) told Just the News recently. “So, how did they get it wrong? They got it wrong by denying what they knew to be true. TikTok is such a good example where [the Chinese] turned it into a full spy tool, and fools signed up for it, even though it was designed to be a spy tool, and it’s been an effective one.”
More on this story via The Republic Brief:
Security experts admit, “This is not something you would normally hear me say, but Donald Trump was right on TikTok years ago,” Warner said last month. “If your country uses Huawei, if your kids are on TikTok, if your population uses WeChat as a social media platform, the ability for China to have undue influence is, I think, a much greater challenge and a much more immediate threat than any kind of actual, armed conflict.” CONTINUE READING…