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The U.S. Federal Government May Not Use TikTok

Client Updates / Jan 30, 2023

Written by Haim Ravia and Dotan Hammer

On the last Thursday of 2022, the President of the United States, Joe Biden, singed into law a budget bill spanning more than 1,600 pages, including a prohibition of the use of TikTok on federal government-issued devices.

The prohibition, titled “No TikTok on Government Devices Act”, will affect more than 4 million U.S. government employees but excludes those who use TikTok for law enforcement, national security, and security research purposes. The federal government’s decision some after several states, including Texas, Utah, Florida, and Maryland, have made similar decisions. The prohibition indicates growing concern about the data protection practices of TikTok, a Chinese corporation. It comes amid the fear of the Chinese government’s access to information about the service’s users in the United States. TikTok continues negotiations for an amicable agreement with the U.S. government to alleviate the government’s national security concerns.

Among the other laws approved by the President of the United States is the Consumer Protection Act INFORM, which requires online marketplaces (such as Amazon and eBay) to collect and verify the bank account information and contact details of high-volume sellers, to reduce and deter the online sale of counterfeit products; The Ransom Attacks Act, which requires the FTC to report to Congress the scope and types of foreign ransomware or other cyber-attack complaints it receives; and the Children and Media Research Advancement Act (CAMRA) which mandates research on the effects of media and technology on infants, children, and adolescents, including cognitive, mental and physical health impacts of social media, artificial intelligence, video games, and virtual reality.

Click here to read the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2023 (the No TikTok on Government Devices Act is on page 800).