TikTok to Cease Operations in Hong Kong

TikTok to Cease Operations in Hong Kong Cybersecurity

TikTok has confirmed that it will withdraw from the Hong Kong market following the application of China’s new national security laws in the country. “In light of recent events, we have decided to stop the operations of the TikTok app in Hong Kong,” a TikTok spokesperson told ZDNet. The law, which came into force last week, criminalizes “secession, subversion, the organization and commission of terrorist activities, and collusion with a foreign country”. Those convicted under this law could be sentenced to life in prison.

Although TikTok has not confirmed its exit date from the semi-autonomous market, a spokesperson initially told Reuters that it would be “in the coming days”.

The Hong Kong market, however, is a small non-profit market for the viral video sharing platform, which belongs to the Beijing-based technology company ByteDance. Although TikTok is a Chinese company, it has been designed to
what mainland China cannot access. ByteDance
operates a similar platform called Douyin in China.

Tech companies take a closer look at these new laws

The announcement of TikTok comes hours after tech giants Facebook, Twitter and Google decided to suspend all requests for user information from the Hong Kong government. As reported CNET, the move comes as tech companies have decided to take a closer look at what the new national security laws imposed by China mean.

“We are discontinuing consideration of government requests for Hong Kong user data pending further assessment of the national security law, including a formal human rights check and consultations with international experts human rights, “a Facebook spokesperson said in a statement. A company spokesperson said Twitter had “serious concerns about both the development process and the intent of the law.”

Telegraph has stated that it will also temporarily refuse requests for data from the Hong Kong authorities. “We understand the importance of protecting the privacy rights of our Hong Kong users in these circumstances,” said Mike Ravdonikas of Telegram. “As a result, Telegram does not intend to process requests for data relating to its Hong Kong users until an international consensus is reached regarding the political changes taking place in the city.”

TikTok criticized for its data management

Despite TikTok’s concerns about the new Chinese laws, the platform itself has already been criticized in the past for the way it handles user data. Just yesterday, Australian labor senator Jenny McAllister voiced concerns about the transparency of the social network, as it approaches Australian privacy laws.

“Credible sources have expressed specific concerns about TikTok in recent years. The first is that they are not fully transparent or insufficiently transparent about what is going on with the individual data, “said Jenny McAllister, speaking on ABC RN Drive on Monday. “The second is that it is not entirely clear what their content moderation policies are. And there is concern that some of these content moderation approaches are not in line with Australian values. For example, the removal of information from Tiananmen Square or the removal of priorities for the Hong Kong protests. ”

India also last month banned the Chinese video sharing app, along with 59 others, and the U.S. military reportedly banned the use of TikTok in January for security reasons.

Source: ZDNet.com

Source: www.zdnet.fr

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