TikTok Under Scrutiny in Australia Over Security, Data Concerns

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TikTok has come below scrutiny in Australia, because the Chinese-owned social media platform is being investigated for any dangers it could pose to customers from potential international interference and information privateness points, authorities sources informed Reuters.

Owned by Bytedance, TikTok opened an workplace in Australia in current weeks. Offices of each the Home Affairs and Attorney-General are discussing TikTok’s operations, the sources mentioned.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison mentioned his authorities was “having a good look” at TikTok, which has additionally fallen below US scrutiny for “national security risks”.

“If we consider there is a need to take further action than we are taking now, then I can tell you we won’t be shy about it,” Morrison informed Melbourne radio station 3AW on Friday.

Separately, Labor Senator Jenny McAllister, the chairwoman of a parliamentary inquiry into international interference via social media, has recognized TikTok as needing additional scrutiny, noting 1.6 million younger Australians used the app.

“Some of these approaches to moderating content might be inconsistent with Australian values,” she informed ABC radio.

“For example, removing material about Tiananmen Square, or deprioritising material about Hong Kong protests,” she added, referring to scholar protests in Beijing in 1989 and pro-democracy protests in Hong Kong over the previous 12 months.

Two of the three administrators of the brand new Australian TikTok operation are senior executives of Chinese mum or dad firm ByteDance, firm data seen by Reuters present.

TikTok Australia common supervisor Lee Hunter, who was recruited from Google in June, has written to Australian politicians saying TikTok was “being used as a political football”.

It was “critical you understand that we are independent and not aligned with any government, political party or ideology”, the letter mentioned, including TikTok Australia’s information was saved securely in Singapore and the United States.

Last week, New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern appeared with an impersonator in a video posted on the extremely fashionable social media app.

© Thomson Reuters 2020

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