WASHINGTON (NEXSTAR) — Time is up for TikTok on government phones.
Lawmakers are poised to ban the popular app from federal workers’ devices and are talking about taking even more aggressive steps to restrict the app.
A provision to ban the app from most federal government devices is part of the omnibus spending package that’s on the brink of passage in Congress.
Sen. Josh Hawley led that charge.
“This is a big step, and this will be the biggest action against big tech that Congress has ever taken,” Hawley said.
He believes the app is dangerous.
“It’s a huge security risk for American’s privacy and also national security,” Hawley said.
Senate Intelligence Chairman Mark Warner agrees. He believes TikTok is a threat because it’s owned by China and collects users’ personal data that could be used against the U.S. Plus, the Chinese government could influence what information people see on the app.
“The communist party of China could dial the algorithms and this become a misinformation channel, a manipulation channel,” Warner said.
Sen. Rick Scott says all Americans should consider ditching TikTok.
“Every parent should be questioning TikTok right now. It’s toxic to your children,” Scott said.
Lawmakers say they aren’t done with TikTok yet. They’ve been waiting on the Biden Administration to take action.
“My patience has worn thin,” Warner said. “The Biden Administration, they’ve had over a year where they were supposed to be figuring out a way to keep the data of Americans safe and to make sure that TikTok did not become a propaganda tool.”
Hawley is also pushing the president’s team to take action.
“They need to force the parent company to sell TikTok USA and keep American’s data safe,” Hawley said.
Both senators say that if the administration doesn’t do something, they believe Congress will.
“I think there will be legislative action we’ll be taking next year,” Warner said.
Some in Congress even suggest banning TikTok from the U.S. entirely. That proposal likely won’t be considered until the next Congress comes to town.