Trump Signs Executive Order Banning Transactions with ByteDance and WeChat

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ByteDance Wants To Remove
FILE PHOTO: Tik Tok logos are seen on smartphones in front of a displayed ByteDance logo in this illustration taken November 27, 2019. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/Illustration/File Photo

INTRO: US President Donald Trump has signed an executive order that bans any transactions with Chinese companies WeChat and ByteDance (the owner of TikTok). The order goes into effect from September 20. Notably, Microsoft is getting to complete its acquisition of TikTok’s US operations just a couple of days before that deadline

Post-September 20, it seems ByteDance will not be ready to generate revenue from the US, or maybe pay its US staff thanks to the ban. However, the order (see below) is fairly vague on what is going to happen once the deadline passes.

“TikTok, a video-sharing mobile application owned by the Chinese company ByteDance Ltd., has reportedly been downloaded over 175 million times within us and over one billion times globally. TikTok automatically captures vast swaths of data from its users, including Internet and other network activity information like location data and browsing and search histories. This data collection threatens to permit the Chinese Communist Party access to Americans’ personal and proprietary information — potentially allowing China to trace the locations of Federal employees and contractors, build dossiers of private information for blackmail, and conduct corporate espionage.” reads a part of the order.

The executive order also cites India’s ban on TikTok, and therefore the reasons cited by the Indian government for implementing the ban. “The Government of India recently banned the utilization of TikTok and other Chinese mobile applications throughout the country; during a statement, India’s Ministry of Electronics and knowledge Technology asserted that they were “stealing and surreptitiously transmitting users’ data in an unauthorized manner to servers which have locations outside India.”

A similar executive order has also been signed for WeChat.

Meanwhile, the United States Senate has passed a bill banning TikTok for Federal employees. The bill has skilled the House and therefore the Senate, which suggests it could soon be implemented as a law within the country.

ByteDance and WeChat are yet to offer any response to the new executive order by Trump, but it seems their troubles are just starting, and starting to grow across the planet .

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