TikTok, a social media app, has been banned from Australian government devices due to security concerns. In a statement issued on Tuesday, Attorney General Mark Dreyfus confirmed the TikTok ban.
“Today, I directed the Attorney-Department General’s Secretary to issue a mandatory direction under the Protective Security Policy Framework prohibiting the TikTok app from being used on devices issued by Commonwealth departments and agencies.”
“The directive will be implemented as soon as possible. Exemptions will be granted only on a case-by-case basis, with appropriate security safeguards in place “Mr. Dreyfus stated.
TikTok Australia and New Zealand general manager Lee Hunter stated that the company is “extremely disappointed” by this decision.
“[The decision] is motivated by politics rather than facts. We are also disappointed that TikTok and the millions of Australians who use it had to learn of this decision through the media, despite our repeated offers to constructively engage with government on this policy “In a statement, Mr Hunter said.
“Once again, we emphasise that there is no evidence that TikTok poses a security risk to Australians and that it should not be treated differently than other social media platforms.”
Concerns about TikTok revolve around the possibility of data being harvested and accessed by the Chinese government in accordance with national laws that can compel companies to hand over information.
Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews, who has over 100,000 TikTok followers, previously confirmed he would delete his account but had not yet been briefed on the Commonwealth’s national security advice. In matters of national security, he told reporters, his government would follow the lead of its federal counterparts.