For a few weeks, TikTok has been observed by government authorities from different countries.
TikTok is not only a deeply rooted social network. It has also become the center of suspicion for some government authorities ; the same ones that, for weeks, have been requesting the uninstallation of the app on work phones. Along with these recommendations aimed at the public sector, it is now a media outlet that warns its employees on the subject: the BBC.
Following in the footsteps of the DR (Denmark’s public service broadcaster) taken over on March 9, BBC London has advised its staff to uninstall TikTok on corporate phones due to security and privacy concerns.
This announcement comes after the UK government forced officials to remove the popular ByteDance-developed app from phones and tablets. In this case, the BBC indicated that they will continue to use the platform for editorial and advertising purposes.
TikTok and China: unconfirmed suspicions
While TikTok’s software is run from Singapore, parent company ByteDance maintains its main headquarters in Beijing. This situation has raised some alerts in the United States and Europe regarding the possible access that the Chinese government may have to the data generated by users.
Currently, TikTok maintains more than 1 billion monthly active users, surpassing systems like Snapchat, Pinterest and Twitter. The mobile app has been downloaded 2.6 billion times from official iOS and Android repositories, generating an average viewing time of an hour and a half per day among users.
In the email sent to BBC employees, it is noted that “the decision is based on concerns raised by government authorities around the world regarding privacy and data security. If it’s a BBC corporate device and you don’t need to use TikTok for business reasons, the app should be removed from the BBC corporate mobile.”