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US federal agencies given 30 days to get rid of TikTok

Government agencies have thirty days to ensure TikTok has been completely wiped from any federal device or system.

The White House issued a guidance memorandum on Monday, specifically ordering all government agencies to ensure the Chinese-owned app has been removed from all federal networks and employee devices.

The US Office of Management and Budget (OMB) memo, which explains the conditions of the removal, also stressed that the agencies will be required to alter any vendor contracts to include the same.

This means a third-party vendor that has an information technology-related contract with the feds will also be forced to comply with the new directive and must remove TikTok from any devices and systems used as part of their work within a longer timeframe of 90 days.

The OMB memo allows limited exceptions to the rule for law enforcement, national security interests, and security research, with prior approval only.

Meantime, to the north, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau also issued a national decree against TikTok, banning the app from Canada's government-issued devices due to its "unacceptable" privacy and security risks.

The ban takes place amid fears over the massive amounts of data TikTok's parent company, ByteDance, was collecting on US government workers.

ByteDance is required by Chinese law to make the app’s data available to the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) on request, although ByteDance claims it has not turned any data over so far.

US lawmakers say the data collected through the video-sharing app which includes usernames, ages, phone numbers, email addresses, keystrokes, and more violates user privacy and can be used to spy on the American people or spread propaganda through its questionable algorithms.

More than half of US state governments have now banned TikTok from state devices and systems.

Last week, the European Commission also banned staff from using the Chinese social media app over security concerns.

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