Washington, DC – Energy and Commerce Committee Republican Leader Greg Walden (R-OR) and Consumer Protection and Commerce Subcommittee Republican Leader Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-WA) penned a letter to ByteDance Founder and CEO Mr. Yiming Zhang regarding data privacy concerns with TikTok.
The letter asks 22 questions related to TikTok’s potential violations of the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA); TikTok’s collection and use of American’s information and whether such information is being shared with the Chinese Communist Party; TikTok’s corporate governance; and issues related to the COVID-19 crisis.
“We are living through an unprecedented time due to the ongoing COVID-19 crisis. As a result of this pandemic, millions of our citizens, through no fault of their own, have no choice but to stay home. In doing so, they rely on the Internet to connect them to families, friends, and vital services. As a result, mobile application downloads have increased dramatically, especially TikTok. In fact, there has been a spike in both unique users and time spent on TikTok in recent months. Congress has significant concerns over TikTok’s data practices, including whether TikTok continues to violate the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA) and whether TikTok shares American user’s information with the Chinese Communist Party,” Walden and McMorris Rodgers wrote.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, the number of TikTok users has skyrocketed, as has U.S. skepticism of the Chinese Communist Party and its motives. This pandemic has also highlighted the need to protect American consumers from bad actors.
Click HERE to read the full letter.