TikTok offered US Government a ‘kill switch’

TikTok offered US Government a Kill Switch

TikTok has revealed that it offered the US government a “kill switch” in 2022, granting the government the power to shut down the platform to address national security and data protection concerns. This disclosure comes as TikTok and its parent company, ByteDance, challenge legislation that requires ByteDance to sell TikTok or face a US ban due to fears of data sharing with the Chinese government, claims both companies deny.

Legal Challenge Against Legislation

TikTok’s legal filing argues the law contradicts the US tradition of supporting an open internet and unfairly targets the platform. They assert that the US government stopped meaningful negotiations after the “kill switch” offer and did not engage in further talks or inspections.

Details of the Kill Switch Proposed Agreement

The proposed “National Security Agreement” included rules for TikTok’s data protection and restricted ByteDance’s access to US user data. The “kill switch” would allow the government to suspend TikTok if these rules were violated. The US government has dismissed the proposal as insufficient for mitigating national security risks, emphasizing the necessity of divesting TikTok’s US assets.

Upcoming Legal Proceedings

Legal proceedings are set for September, with the legislation demanding ByteDance’s divestment by January or a ban will be enforced. Despite TikTok’s claims of compliance and data oversight by Oracle, an investigation found ongoing data sharing with ByteDance. The US government maintains that only divestment will address security concerns.

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TikTok has revealed that it offered the US government a “kill switch” in 2022, granting the government the power to shut down the platform to address national security and data protection concerns. This disclosure comes as TikTok and its parent company, ByteDance, challenge legislation that requires ByteDance to sell TikTok or face a US ban due to fears of data sharing with the Chinese government, claims both companies deny.

Legal Challenge Against Legislation

TikTok’s legal filing argues the law contradicts the US tradition of supporting an open internet and unfairly targets the platform. They assert that the US government stopped meaningful negotiations after the “kill switch” offer and did not engage in further talks or inspections.

Details of the Kill Switch Proposed Agreement

The proposed “National Security Agreement” included rules for TikTok’s data protection and restricted ByteDance’s access to US user data. The “kill switch” would allow the government to suspend TikTok if these rules were violated. The US government has dismissed the proposal as insufficient for mitigating national security risks, emphasizing the necessity of divesting TikTok’s US assets.

Upcoming Legal Proceedings

Legal proceedings are set for September, with the legislation demanding ByteDance’s divestment by January or a ban will be enforced. Despite TikTok’s claims of compliance and data oversight by Oracle, an investigation found ongoing data sharing with ByteDance. The US government maintains that only divestment will address security concerns.