US announces curbs on use of Chinese apps TikTok, WeChat over 'national security risks'
New Delhi | Jagran News Desk: The United States Commerce Department on Friday announced a ban on any transactions on Chinese social media apps TikTok and WeChat over "unacceptable national security risks". The order will take effect from Sunday. In a statement, Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross said that the ban seeks to "combat China's malicious collection of American citizens' personal data".
The commerce secretary said that cash transfers related to WeChat and its parent company Tencent Holdings Ltd. within the US will be prohibited from Sunday, September 20. WeChat is mostly used in the US for money transfers. Also, the distribution, maintenance and updates of WeChat and TikTok through app stores in the US will also be barred from Sunday.
"WeChat US, for all practical purposes, will be shut down," Ross said while speaking to Fox Business. "The basic Tiktok will stay intact until November 12," although people in the US won't be able to download upgrades from Sunday night, he added.
The move has come amid the ongoing talks between China's ByteDance, TikTok's parent organisation and Oracle to comply with a previous executive order that required the Chinese firm to sell its US operations to an American company.
Earlier on August 6, US President Donald Trump had signed an executive order barring transactions with the ByteDance and Tencent after 45 days. Citing the "threat" posed by TikTok, the order said that the US government will take "aggressive action against the owners of TikTok to protect its national security".
The demands of ban on the Chinese apps picked up after India's move to ban over 100 Chinese apps, including TikTok and WeChat citing security concerns. The move was taken in the aftermath of the violent face-off between Indian and Chinese forces on June 14 led to the death of 20 Indian soldiers.
Following India's decision, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo had said that the Trump administration was also considering a ban on TikTok application in the US.
Posted By: Shashikant Sharma