Canada bans social media platform app TikTok from all government issued devices starting on Tuesday.
The decision follows a review done by Canada’s chief information officer and the app ‘presents an unacceptable level of risk to privacy and security,’ government spokesperson said in a statement.
This comes after the European Commission announced similar ban.
Canada’s prime minister Justin Trudeau said there was enough concern about security around the app to require the change.
“This may be the first step, this may be the only step we need to take,’ he said on Monday.
The platform has been criticized for its use of personal information and ties to the Chinese government.
The video app is owned by Chinese firm ByteDance Ltd.
US federal employees were banned from using TikTok last year, and on Monday the White House gave government agencies 30 days to delete the app from their systems.
Some American Universities, have banned the app from being used on their networks. Broader public bans have been implemented in India and Several other Asian Countries.
However, the company insists that its government don’t have access to user data and that a Chinese version of the app is separate from the one used in the rest of the world. But last year, the company admitted some staff in China can access the data of European users.
The ban for European Commission employees is set to come into force on 15 March.
Additionally, the Canadian privacy regulators are also investigating TikTok over concerns about user data, in particular whether the company obtains consent from users when collecting personal information.
The president of Canada’s Treasury Board, said the government ‘is committed to keeping government information secure.”
The app will be removed from government issued phones this week and other devices and blocked from downloads in the future.
Moreover, the Company spokes person said the ban on government issued device happened without citing any specifics security concerns about TikTok contacting us to discuss any concerns prior to making this decision.
“We are always available to meet with our government officials to discuss how we protect the privacy and security of Canadians but singling out TikTok in this way does nothing to achieve that shared goal,’ The spokesperson said.
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