US President Donald Trump signed two executive orders banning any transactions with TikTok app's owner, ByteDance, and its subsidiaries, as well as transactions involving social network WeChat, with its owner, Chinese internet giant Tencent, and its subsidiaries. The documents were distributed by the White House press service.
The ban in both cases begins 45 days after the order’s publication, that is at the end of September, and concerns "any transaction by any person, or with respect to any property, subject to the jurisdiction of the United States, with ByteDance ... or its subsidiaries", as well as any WeChat-related transactions - with Tencent Holdings or its subsidiaries, TASS reports.
According to Trump, TikTok app and WeChat social network pose a threat to US national security. "TikTok automatically captures vast swaths of information from its users, including Internet and other network activity information such as location data and browsing and search histories. This data collection threatens to allow the Chinese Communist Party access to Americans’ personal and proprietary information — potentially allowing China to track the locations of Federal employees and contractors, build dossiers of personal information for blackmail, and conduct corporate espionage," the statement said.
"Like TikTok, WeChat automatically captures vast swaths of information from its users. This data collection threatens to allow the Chinese Communist Party access to Americans’ personal and proprietary information. In addition, the application captures the personal and proprietary information of Chinese nationals visiting the United States, thereby allowing the Chinese Communist Party a mechanism for keeping tabs on Chinese citizens who may be enjoying the benefits of a free society for the first time in their lives," the order said.
On August 3, Trump announced that Microsoft or another company from the United States must conclude a deal to acquire TikTok by September 15, otherwise activities of the social network will be prohibited on the US territory. On July 31, the president said he plans to ban TikTok in the US.