Folks, it appears TikTok is here to stay. The Federal Government won’t be banning the app in Australia after security agencies determined it isn’t a threat to national security.
The decision comes after Prime Minister Scott Morrison said the Government had launched an investigation into the Chinese-owned company over data security.
Last month, a federal MP accused TikTok of “hoovering up” the data of its users and storing it on servers accessible to China.
TikTok Australia has absolutely denied these claims, saying user data is stored in Singapore and the United States. Data has never been given to the Chinese Government either, TikTok Australia manager Lee Hunter said in a statement.
“Nor would we do so if asked,” he said.
“The truth is, with tensions rising between some countries, TikTok has unfortunately been caught in the middle, and is being used by some as a political football.”
Speaking at the Aspen Security Forum, via video call, on Wednesday morning, Morrison said there was nothing at this point that would suggest that Australia’s security interests or people have been compromised.
“We’ll obviously keep watching them, but there’s no evidence to suggest to us today that [a ban] is a step that is necessary,” Morrison said, as per the ABC.
However, Morrison did tell TikTok users to be vigilant.
“People need to understand where the extension cord goes back to,” he said.
“People should know that the line connects right back to China and they should exercise their own judgement about whether they should participate in those things or not.”
India, meanwhile, has already banned TikTok while Donald Trump has threatened to do the same in the US.
Trump has given Tiktok’s parent company, ByteDance, until September 15 to sell the app’s US operations to Microsoft, which Trump described as a very big, secure, and American company.Image: Getty Images / NurPhoto, TikTok / @rohitroygre