Legislation that would institute a TikTok ban on government devices has cleared the first major hurdle in Congress, passing the Senate with unanimous consent. The "No TikTok on Government Devices Act" was authored by Senator Josh Hawley (R-MO) but had strong bipartisan support.
The South Dakota TikTok ban applies to the devices of government agencies, employees and contractors, put forward in the interest of protecting state and national security.
The Trump administration had proposed banning TikTok as a national security threat. Cybersecurity researchers from the University of Toronto have come to a different conclusion, though with caveats.
The surveillance concerns surrounding TikTok are legitimate, yet they are no more legitimate than the spyware potential of countless Chinese IoT devices.
The Trump administration set the internet ablaze when it issued an executive order that sets a firm date for a TikTok ban. That Tencent-owned WeChat would also be included was something of a surprise.
In line with the Trump administration's recent overtures toward a nationwide TikTok ban, the new bill if passed would ban TikTok on all devices throughout the US government.