Open Markets Statement on Sens. Schumer and Cotton’s Request for a Federal Investigation into TikTok
October 24, 2019
Washington, DC — In response to Senators Schumer (D-NY) and Cotton (R-AR) asking the U.S. intelligence community to investigate national security threats posed by TikTok, the Open Markets Institute calls on the Committee for Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS) to open a review of TikTok’s parent company Bytedance, as well as its 2016 acquisition of Music.ly. Furthermore, U.S. authorities should require Bytendance to sell TikTok to non-Chinese owners, or else ban TikTok in the U.S.
According to Senators Schumer and Cotton, over 110 million Americans downloaded the app in the last year. At best, TikTok is a direct source for the Chinese to harvest American user data; at worst, TikTok is an opportunity for the Chinese Communist Party to use algorithms to manipulate Americans to push an authoritarian agenda. This is an urgent threat to our public discourse, elections, and democracy as a whole.
Press Contact: Stella Roque at Open Markets Institute, [email protected]