The United States Justice Department is investigating TikTok over a recent incident involving the spying on a journalist, according to sources familiar with the matter.
The incident in question occurred last month, when a journalist from the Washington Post reported that she had received a notification from TikTok warning her that her account had been accessed by someone in China. The journalist had used the social media platform to post about the Chinese government’s crackdown on Muslim minorities in the country’s Xinjiang region.
The incident raised concerns about the security of TikTok’s user data and the potential for the Chinese government to use the platform to monitor or censor users critical of its policies. The company responded by stating that it was investigating the incident and taking steps to improve its security protocols.
Now, the Justice Department is getting involved, reportedly launching an investigation into the incident and the broader security implications of TikTok’s ties to China. The investigation is said to be in its early stages, and it is unclear what specific allegations or issues the Justice Department is focusing on.
The investigation comes amid growing concerns about the Chinese government’s influence over tech companies with ties to China, and the potential risks posed by such companies to U.S. national security and privacy. TikTok, which is owned by the Chinese company ByteDance, has come under scrutiny from U.S. lawmakers and regulators in recent months, with some calling for a ban on the app over national security concerns.
In response to the news of the investigation, TikTok issued a statement reiterating its commitment to user privacy and security and stating that it would cooperate with any investigations or inquiries from U.S. authorities.
The Justice Department’s investigation into TikTok highlights the growing concerns over Chinese tech companies and their potential impact on U.S. national security and privacy. As the U.S. government ramps up its scrutiny of TikTok and other Chinese tech firms, it is important for these companies to take steps to address concerns over user privacy and data security, and to work with U.S. regulators and authorities to ensure compliance with applicable laws and regulations. The outcome of the investigation could have significant implications for TikTok and other Chinese tech companies operating in the U.S. market.