Existing Ban for Federal Employees
TikTok, owned by Chinese company ByteDance, currently faces a ban for federal employees from using or downloading the app on government-owned devices.
Concerns Over Privacy and Child Safety
Hawley stated on Twitter, "TikTok is China's backdoor into Americans' lives. It threatens our children's privacy as well as their mental health. I will introduce legislation to ban it nationwide." The Senator did not specify when the bill would be introduced.
TikTok Responds to Ban Proposal
TikTok responded to Hawley's proposal, with a spokeswoman stating, "Senator Hawley's call for a total ban of TikTok takes a piecemeal approach to national security and a piecemeal approach to broad industry issues like data security, privacy, and online harms.
We hope he will focus on addressing those issues holistically rather than pretending that banning a single service would solve any of the problems he's concerned about or make Americans safer."