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.
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.
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 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 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.
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.
Government bans have been discussed under both the Trump and Biden administrations in the US. The transparency center is part of TikTok’s bid to reassure regulators.
TikTok is currently working on opening the first of its European data centers in Dublin, as it faces the prospect of a ban if it does not come into compliance with EU rules under the Digital Services Act (DSA).
The White House has ordered federal agencies to remove TikTok from government devices within 30 days. The TikTok ban includes any app made by parent company Bytedance, and extends to government contractors to be implemented over a longer period of time.
TikTok is no longer welcome on the devices of federal agencies, along with many state governments. But some in Congress are calling for an even broader TikTok ban, to the point of removing it from the country entirely.