These 29 States Have Banned TikTok on Authorities-Issued Gadgets, Networks

Almost 30 states, led by Democrats and Republicans alike, have taken motion to ban the favored Chinese language-owned app TikTok on some or all state-issued units and networks.

1. Nebraska

Then-Gov. Pete Ricketts, a Republican, banned TikTok for state units on Aug. 12, 2020, citing “safety considerations,” Fox Enterprise reported.

“The Chinese language authorities has lengthy engaged in systematic, covert efforts to entry delicate information from U.S. governments, corporations, and people,” Ricketts, whom Republican Gov. Jim Pillen not too long ago appointed to fill retiring Sen. Ben Sasse’s seat, stated in a press release on the time. “As an app owned by an organization based mostly in China, TikTok is legally obligated to offer information from its customers to the nation’s communist regime upon request.”

“To keep up the safety of information owned by the state of Nebraska, and to safeguard towards the intrusive cyber actions of China’s communist authorities, we’ve made the choice to ban TikTok on state units,” Ricketts added.

2. South Dakota

Republican Gov. Kristi Noem banned “TikTok for state authorities companies, workers, and contractors utilizing state units” by an govt order on Nov. 29, in keeping with a press launch.

“South Dakota could have no half within the intelligence-gathering operations of countries who hate us,” Noem stated. “The Chinese language Communist Occasion makes use of data that it gathers on TikTok to control the American individuals, they usually collect information off the units that entry the platform.”

“Due to our critical responsibility to guard the personal information of South Dakota residents, we should take this motion instantly. I hope different states will comply with South Dakota’s lead, and Congress ought to take broader motion, as properly,” Noem added.

3. North Carolina

Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper issued an govt order on Jan. 12 “prohibiting the usage of sure purposes and web sites on state units, together with computer systems and cell phones,” in keeping with a press launch.

“It’s necessary for us to guard state data know-how from international international locations which have actively participated in cyberattacks towards the USA,” Cooper stated in a press launch. “Defending North Carolina from cyberthreats is significant to making sure the protection, safety, privateness, and success of our state and its individuals.”

The order calls on “the state Chief Info Officer (CIO) and the North Carolina Division of Info Know-how (NCDIT) to develop a coverage inside 14 days that prohibits the usage of TikTok, WeChat, and doubtlessly different purposes on state company data know-how programs in a fashion that presents an unacceptable cybersecurity threat,” the assertion stated.

4. Wisconsin

Democratic Gov. Tony Evers banned “TikTok and different potential cybersecurity-threatening applied sciences on state-issued units” by an govt order on Jan. 11.

“Within the digital age, defending our state’s know-how and cybersecurity infrastructure and defending digital privateness must be a high precedence for us as a state,” Evers stated in a press launch.

“I belief the professionals who work on this area, and it was necessary for me to seek the advice of with and get recommendation from consultants in legislation enforcement, cybersecurity, and counterintelligence, together with the knowledge know-how consultants working inside [the Department of Administration’s Division of Enterprise Technology], to make the most effective resolution to guard state applied sciences, and finally, the individuals of Wisconsin,” the governor added.

5. South Carolina

Republican Gov. Henry McMaster penned a letter to Marcia Adams, govt director of the Division of Administration, on Dec. 5, “requesting that the social media platform TikTok be completely eliminated, and entry blocked from all state authorities digital units which might be managed by the Division of Administration.”

Within the letter, McMaster additionally wrote:

Defending our state’s vital cyber infrastructure from international and home threats is vital to making sure the well being, security, and well-being of our residents and companies.

Federal legislation enforcement and nationwide safety officers have warned that TikTok poses a transparent and current hazard to its customers, and a rising bipartisan coalition in Congress is pushing to ban entry to TikTok in the USA.

6. Maryland

Then-Gov. Larry Hogan, a Republican, introduced on Dec. 6, an “emergency cybersecurity directive to ban the usage of sure Chinese language and Russian-influenced merchandise and platforms for the manager department of state authorities, together with TikTok,” in keeping with a press launch.

“There could also be no higher menace to our private security and our nationwide safety than the cyber vulnerabilities that assist our each day lives,” stated Hogan, whose eight years in workplace ended Wednesday.

“Because the cyber capital of America, Maryland has taken daring and decisive actions to organize for and deal with cybersecurity threats. To additional shield our programs, we’re issuing this emergency directive towards international actors and organizations that search to weaken and divide us,” he added.

7. Texas

Republican Gov. Greg Abbott penned two letters on Dec. 7; one to state Home Speaker Dade Phelan and Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick and one other to state company leaders highlighting “the state of Texas’ duty to protect the protection and cybersecurity of Texans, along with the federal authorities’s duty for foreign-policy points,” in keeping with a press launch.

In his letter to Patrick and Phelan, Abbott wrote:

TikTok is a video-sharing cell utility with greater than 85 million customers in the USA. It belongs to a Chinese language firm referred to as ByteDance Ltd., which employs Chinese language Communist Occasion members and has a subsidiary that’s partially owned by the Chinese language Communist Occasion.

TikTok harvests huge quantities of information from its customers’ units—together with when, the place, and the way they conduct web exercise—and affords this trove of probably delicate data to the Chinese language authorities.

8. Oklahoma

On Dec. 8, Republican Gov. Kevin Stitt signed an govt order “[directing] that no govt department worker or company of the state of Oklahoma shall obtain or use the TikTok utility or go to the TikTok web site on authorities networks or government-issued units, together with state-issued cellphones, computer systems, or another machine able to web connectivity, and that TikTok shall be blacklisted from state networks and state-managed units.”

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In a press launch, Stitt stated:

Sustaining the cybersecurity of state authorities is important to proceed to serve and shield Oklahoma residents, and we is not going to take part in serving to the Chinese language Communist Occasion acquire entry to authorities data.

9. Arkansas

Republican Gov. Sarah Huckabee Sanders, on her first day in workplace on Jan. 10, issued an govt order banning the use, set up, or connection to “TikTok on any state community and state-issued data or communications know-how machine.”

“The challenges posed by China are notably acute with respect to data and communications applied sciences. In keeping with the Workplace of the Director of Nationwide Intelligence, China ‘presents the broadest, most energetic, and protracted cyberespionage menace to U.S. authorities and personal sector networks,’” Sanders’ govt order reads.

The order additionally reads:

The video utility referred to as TikTok, which is owned by ByteDance Ltd., a Chinese language firm with vital ties to the Chinese language Communist Occasion, is of specific concern.

TikTok can harvest massive quantities of information from units on which it’s put in, together with data concerning when, the place, and the way customers work together with the web.

TikTok has confirmed that China-based workers can entry information concerning the Web exercise of individuals positioned in the USA.

10. Utah

Republican Gov. Spencer Cox banned TikTok on state-owned units by an govt order on Dec. 12.

“China’s entry to information collected by TikTok presents a menace to our cybersecurity,” Cox stated in a media launch. “In consequence, we’ve deleted our TikTok account and ordered the identical on all state-owned units. We should shield Utahns and ensure that the individuals of Utah can belief the state’s safety programs.”

11. Alabama

Republican Gov. Kay Ivey banned TikTok for each state devices and the state network on Dec. 12.

“Disturbingly, TikTok harvests huge quantities of information from its customers, a lot of which has no official connection to the app’s supposed objective of video sharing,” Ivey wrote in a memorandum to the heads of all state companies. “For instance, when customers run the TikTok app for the primary time, they provide TikTok entry to data similar to their machine model and mannequin, cell service, searching historical past, app and file names and kinds, keystroke patterns and rhythms, wi-fi connections, and geolocation.”

12. Mississippi

Republican Gov. Tate Reeves banned TikTok on “all state-issued authorities units and the state’s community” on Jan. 11, in accordance a press launch.

“It’s no secret that the Chinese language Communist Occasion is actively making an attempt to steal U.S. mental property and Individuals’ private data. It’s a significant menace to our nationwide safety and significant infrastructure, prices the U.S. financial system tons of of billions yearly, and jeopardizes American jobs,” Reeves stated within the a press launch.

“Mississippi isn’t going to sit down round ready for the Chinese language Communist Occasion to steal our state authorities information, and that’s why I issued this directive. It should assist us higher shield our state’s delicate data and significant infrastructure,” Reeves added.

13. Louisiana

Republican Secretary of State Kyle Ardoin banned TikTok on all Division of State units, and likewise referred to as on Gov. John Bel Edwards, a Democrat, to take related measures to ban the app on “on all units owned or leased by the state of Louisiana,” in a letter he despatched to Edwards on Dec. 19.

“As secretary of state, I’ve the intense duty of defending voters’ personally identifiable data, which is why I’ve taken the step of banning the usage of TikTok on all units owned or leased by my company,” Ardoin wrote to Edwards.

“I wholeheartedly imagine that doing so on a statewide stage would shield our information and reaffirm our dedication to privateness protections for our constituents. Due to this fact, I urge you to situation a directive banning the usage of TikTok on our state authorities’s units with instant impact,” Ardoin added.

14. Indiana

The Indiana Workplace of Know-how banned TikTok for each the state system and units on Dec. 7, the Related Press reported.

In keeping with Graig Lubsen, Indiana Workplace of Know-how spokesman, “the workplace ‘blocked TikTok from being utilized in our state system and on our state units,” The Journal Gazette reported.

15. Kansas

Democratic Gov. Laura Kelly issued an govt order on Dec. 28 that “[banned] the usage of the social media platform TikTok on all state-owned units for Kansas govt department companies, boards, and commissions and their respective workers, and prohibits entry on the state community,” in keeping with a press launch.

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“TikTok mines customers’ information and doubtlessly makes it obtainable to the Chinese language Communist Occasion—a menace acknowledged by a rising group of bipartisan leaders throughout the USA,” Kelly stated within the press launch.

Kelly issued the manager order “in response to latest warnings from each the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Federal Communications Fee that consumer information from the social media platform TikTok is doubtlessly being shared with the Chinese language authorities, posing each a nationwide and cybersecurity menace.”

16. North Dakota

Republican Gov. Doug Burgum issued an govt order on Dec. 13, banning TikTok on “state-owned units issued by govt department companies, citing rising nationwide safety considerations,” in keeping with a press launch.

“Defending residents’ information is our high precedence, and our IT professionals have decided, in session with federal officers, that TikTok raises a number of flags by way of the quantity of information it collects and the way that information could also be shared with and utilized by the Chinese language authorities,” Burgum stated.

“Lowering this safety threat is the appropriate factor to do, and we’d provide [North Dakota Information Technology] assist to help and advise any associate entities that want to pursue related measures,” he added. 

17. Iowa

Republican Gov. Kim Reynolds banned TikTok on Dec. 13 for “all state-owned units and [prohibited] state companies from subscribing to or proudly owning a TikTok account,” in keeping with a press launch.

“It’s clear that TikTok represents a nationwide safety threat to our nation, and I refuse to topic the residents of Iowa to that threat,” Reynolds stated within the assertion. “They belief us with their private and confidential data and we’ll take each step attainable to guard it, together with from the Chinese language authorities. The security of Iowans is my [No. 1] precedence, and that features their cybersecurity.”

18. Idaho

Republican Gov. Brad Little signed an govt order on Dec. 14 that banned the app “on state-issued units and networks to guard Idahoans from safety threats posed by the communist Chinese language authorities,” in keeping with a press launch.

“The communist Chinese language authorities can use TikTok to gather vital data from our state and federal authorities, and we’re taking this step to guard Idahoans and Individuals from the sinister motives of a international authorities that doesn’t share our values and seeks to weaken and manipulate our nation,” Little stated. “This new ban to get rid of TikTok from state-issued units and networks will assist shield nationwide safety and Idahoans’ information.”

19. Florida

Florida Chief Monetary Workplace Jimmy Patronis banned TikTok on Aug. 11, 2020, for “Division of Monetary Companies (DFS) units and inside DFS amenities,” in keeping with a press launch.

“My high precedence as Florida’s CFO is to guard our state from fraud and scams, together with all main cybersecurity threats. As we’ve seen with the latest unprecedented Twitter hacks, we should take daring motion now to guard our information and our units from these very actual safety dangers,” Patronis stated.

“The menace TikTok presents far outweighs any profit the applying may present to official enterprise of the company, and that’s the reason I’ve determined to right away ban the applying from DFS units and use of the app inside our amenities,” Patronis added. “With studies of direct ties to the Communist Occasion of China, TikTok is a significant safety threat to the state of Florida and to the USA, and it has no place on state units.”

20. Pennsylvania

Republican state Treasurer Stacy Garrity banned TikTok from Treasury Division units and its programs on Dec. 22.

“Treasury’s laptop community is focused by scammers and criminals every single day. TikTok presents a transparent hazard because of its assortment of private information and its shut connection to the communist Chinese language authorities,” Garrity stated in a press launch. “Banning TikTok from Treasury units and programs is a vital step in our unending work to make sure the protection of Pennsylvanians’ hard-earned tax {dollars} and different necessary, delicate data entrusted to Treasury.”

21. New Jersey

Democratic Gov. Phil Murphy banned TikTok for each “state offered and managed units with some exceptions” on Jan. 9.

“Bolstering cybersecurity is vital to defending the general security and welfare of our state,” Murphy stated in a press launch. “The proactive and preventative measures that we’re implementing as we speak will make sure the confidentiality, integrity, and security of knowledge property managed by New Jersey state authorities. This decisive motion will make sure the cybersecurity of the state is unified towards actors who might search to divide us.”

22. Virginia

Republican Gov. Glenn Youngkin banned TikTok for “state-issued units and state-run wi-fi networks” on Dec. 16, in keeping with a press launch.

“TikTok and WeChat information are a channel to the Chinese language Communist Occasion, and their continued presence represents a menace to nationwide safety, the intelligence group, and the non-public privateness of each single American,” Youngkin stated. “We’re taking this step as we speak to safe state authorities units and wi-fi networks from the specter of infiltration and be sure that we safeguard the information and cybersecurity of state authorities.”

23. West Virginia

Republican state Auditor J.B. McCuskey and Republican state Senate Majority Whip Ryan Weld banned TikTok on each state networks and units on Dec. 19, in keeping with a statement on Twitter from McCuskey.

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“I’m so grateful to work with Senator Weld on this extremely necessary initiative. [We] have seen the menace that China and its authorities poses to our vital infrastructure, and this transfer is a proactive method to guard the taxpayers of West Virginia,” McCuskey stated within the assertion.

24. New Hampshire

Republican Gov. Chris Sununu issued an govt order on Dec. 14, banning TikTok on state issued-devices and networks.

“New Hampshire is becoming a member of the rising checklist of states which have banned TikTok and different Chinese language corporations from state authorities units and networks,” Sununu stated, in keeping with a press launch. “This transfer will assist protect the protection, safety, and privateness of the residents of New Hampshire.”

25. Montana

Republican Gov. Greg Gianforte banned “TikTok on state tools and for state enterprise in Montana” on Dec. 16.

“Authorities’s chief duty is conserving its residents protected and safe. Use of TikTok on state units poses a big threat to the safety of our state and Montanans’ delicate information,” Gianforte stated, in keeping with a press launch.

“Given these grave safety considerations, efficient instantly, no govt company, board, fee, or different govt department entity, official, or worker of the state of Montana shall obtain or entry TikTok on government-issued units or whereas linked to the state community,” he added.

26. Wyoming

Republican Gov. Mark Gordon banned TikTok on Dec. 15 on “all state digital units and networks,” in keeping with a press launch.

“Sustaining strong cybersecurity is a shared duty, and Wyoming is dedicated to figuring out threats that would influence public security,” Gordon stated. “The potential for international governments to entry data collected by TikTok is extraordinarily troubling.”

27. Georgia

Republican Gov. Brian Kemp banned the usage of TikTok by state govt companies by way of a memo to all state company heads on Dec. 15, Fox Enterprise reported.

“The state of Georgia has a duty to forestall any try to entry and infiltrate its safe information and delicate data by international adversaries such because the [Chinese Communist Party],” Kemp stated within the memo.

“The CCP poses an ever-present nationwide safety menace to the USA and Georgia. As such, it’s our responsibility to take motion to protect the protection and safety of our state towards the CCP, entities it controls, and different international cyberthreats,” Kemp stated, including:

Efficient instantly, all Georgia govt department companies, departments, divisions, bureaus, boards, authorities, and commissions are prohibited from utilizing TikTok, WeChat, and Telegram on all programs and units which might be issued, owned, leased, or in any other case managed by the state or used for state enterprise.

The memo defined that “related threats” to these discovered with TikTok “have additionally been recognized for Chinese language-owned Tencent Holdings (proprietor of WeChat) and Russian-owned Telegram.”

28. Kentucky

TikTok was banned on state-owned units, besides “for a legislation enforcement objective,” on Jan. 13, Reuters reported.

The social media coverage within the state’s worker handbook now features a part prohibiting the usage of TikTok by each companies and employees members, WHAS-TV in Louisville, Ky., reported.

29. Ohio

Republican Gov. Mike DeWine banned TikTok for “state-owned or state-leased units” by an govt order on Jan. 8.

“All state companies, boards, and commissions shall prohibit the following on any state owned or state-leased machine succesful of accessing the web: (i) the obtain and/or use of any social media utility, channel, and platform that’s owned by an entity positioned in China and (ii) accessing the web site of any social media utility, channel, and platform that’s owned by an entity positioned in China,” the manager order stated.

“All state companies, boards, and commissions are prohibited from utilizing social media purposes, channels, and platforms which might be owned by an entity positioned in China,” the manager order acknowledged, including:

Such purposes and platforms embody, however will not be restricted to, TikTok, Tencent QQ, Tencent Video, QQ Worldwide (QQi), Qzone, WeChat, Weibo, Xiao HongShu, Zhihu, Meituan, Toutiao, Alipay, Xiami Music, Tiantian Music, DingTalk/Ding Ding, Douban, RenRen, Youku/Tudou, Little Crimson E book, and Zhihu.

TikTok’s Response

A TikTok spokesperson lamented the varied states’ strikes to ban the app on government-issued units.

“We’re disenchanted that so many states are leaping on the political bandwagon to enact insurance policies that can do nothing to advance cybersecurity of their states and are based mostly on unfounded falsehoods about TikTok,” the spokesperson informed The Every day Sign in an electronic mail. “TikTok is liked by hundreds of thousands of Individuals, and it’s unlucky that the numerous state companies, places of work, universities, pupil teams, and sports activities groups in these states will now not have the ability to use TikTok to construct communities and share data.”

The assertion added:

We’re persevering with to work with the federal authorities to finalize an answer that can meaningfully deal with any safety considerations which have been raised on the federal and state stage.

These plans have been developed below the oversight of our nation’s high nationwide safety companies—plans that we’re properly underway in implementing—to additional safe our platform in the USA, and we’ll proceed to transient lawmakers on them.

This text could be up to date ought to extra states transfer to ban TikTok for state-issued units.

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