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    NewsWorldThe European Union banned TikTok on the devices of its staff

    The European Union banned TikTok on the devices of its staff

    The Chinese firm ByteDance is the parent company of TikTok / Photo: AFP

    The European Commission (EC), the executive arm of the European Union (EU), has banned the use of TikTok on its staff’s mobile phones and official devices for security reasons. The Chinese company stated, through a spokesman, that the decision was “wrong” and reaffirmed that it protected the data of its European users.

    TikTok’s parent company, the Chinese firm ByteDance, is under strict surveillance in Western countries for suspicions that Chinese authorities have access to user data.

    The European Commissioner for Industry, Thierry Breton, said that the EC made the decision considering cybersecurity and the protection of the data of the people “who work” in the institution. He told reporters in Brussels that he had spoken with TikTok CEO Shou Zi Chew about concerns about the video app and the privacy of the data of Europeans who visit it.

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    “We are being extremely active… to make sure we are protecting our colleagues”he added.

    An EC spokesman told the AFP news agency that commission staff have been called to remove the app from official service devices as soon as possible, no later than March 15.

    TikTok is under strict surveillance in Western countries
    TikTok is under strict surveillance in Western countries.

    TikTok’s decision

    “We are disappointed with this decision, which we believe is misguided and based on fundamental misunderstandings,” a TikTok spokesperson said.

    “We have contacted the commission to set the record straight and explain how we protect the data of the 125 million people across the EU who visit TikTok every month,” he added.

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    In 2022 the United States banned the app from federal government devices, and some US lawmakers are trying to ban TikTok from operating across the country.

    In November, TikTok admitted that some staff in China could access the data of European users. However, the company claims that it is acting to conform to the rigid rules of operation of the digital giants in the EU space.

    In his reaction to the commission’s decision, the firm’s spokesman assured that TikTok is committed to “minimizing data flows [de sus usuarios] out of Europe”.

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    “We continue to enhance our approach to data security, including establishing three data centers in Europe to store user data locally, and further reducing employee access to that data,” he said.


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