You can bid farewell to TikTok videos if you are serving in the US Navy. The military branch has banned the social networking platform from government-issued mobile devices, saying the popular video making app represented a “cybersecurity threat.”
A bulletin issued by the US Navy was posted on a Facebook page serving military members, informing that users of government-issued mobile devices having Tik Tok and did not remove the app would be blocked from the Navy-Marine Corps Intranet.
The Navy didn’t describe in detail the threats from the app, but Pentagon spokesperson Lieutenant Cornel Uriah Orland said in a statement that the order was part of an effort to “address existing and emerging threats.” TikTok has a good fan base in the US and is popular with teenage users but has come under scrutiny from U.S. regulators and lawmakers in the past months.
According to a report by Reuters last month, the U.S. government opened a national security review of the parent company Beijing ByteDance Technology Co’s 1 billion acquisition of the U.S. social media app Musical.ly. In another incident, U.S. army cadets were instructed not to use TikTok after Senator Chuck Schumer raised security concerns about the army using the app in their recruiting.
A Navy spokesperson said Naval and Marine personnel are allowed to use popular commercial apps, including social media apps, but from time to time specific apps that present security threats are banned. The source refused to give examples of apps that are allowed or those who are perceived as a security risk.
The Pentagon’s Orland said the “Cyber Awareness Message” sent on December 16 “identifies the potential risk associated with using the Tik Tok app and directs appropriate action for employees to take in order to safeguard their personal information.”
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