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Tags: fcc | brendan carr | ban | tiktok | china | bytedance | national security

FCC Commissioner Carr to Newsmax: TikTok Ban About Conduct, Not Content

By    |   Monday, 18 March 2024 07:24 AM EDT

TikTok, with its links to China through its parent company, ByteDance, remains a "clear and present danger to America's national security" and the proposed legislation that could ban its use in the United States is based on its "malign conduct, not its content," Brendan Carr, the senior Republican commissioner on the Federal Communications Commission, told Newsmax on Sunday.

"They told us for years, 'Don't worry. U.S. user data isn't even available inside of China,'" Carr told Newsmax's "Sunday Report." "Turns out leaked material showed that everything is available in China, [including] search and browsing history, keystroke patterns, biometrics location."

Personnel in Beijing used that access, he added, to surveil the locations of specific Americans.

"When they were caught, they said All right, all right, we're going to wall off U.S. user data and not allow it to be accessed from inside China," Carr said."That wasn't true, either."

There have been some arguments that the pending legislation, which would require TikTok to operate under a different, nonadversarial parent company, is a First Amendment matter, but Carr said the issue is based on the company's conduct, not what is shared on the app.

Carr said the odds are good that the Senate will pass the TikTok legislation, as for years, senators have been speaking out about the dangers of the app's links to China.

Meanwhile, TikTok CEO Shou Chew claimed last week that the company has invested to keep data safe and its platform free from outside manipulation, but Carr said the company and its leadership have "lost all credibility and trust in Washington."

"They have time and time again misled the American people," said Carr. "Frankly, if you're the CCP, you're wondering why the U.S. hasn't done this sooner, both because of the national security threat but also as a matter of reciprocity. There's a list of 15 to 20 U.S. applications that have been banned in China for years at this point."

Carr also pointed out that the Chinese have in the past used TikTok to push propaganda and manipulate Americans during elections and will likely do that again this year.

"Before our most recent midterm elections in 2022, CCP state media set up accounts on TikTok and targeted select U.S. politicians for criticism, raising divisive social issues," he said. "We'd expect them to do it again in the future."

However, Carr stressed that the core issue with TikTok is its conduct and the data that flows to Beijing.

"As for the people that love the app, the bill allows TikTok to divest and just says break up your ties with the CCP," and if that happens, "there's 170 million Americans that can continue to be on it," Carr added.

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Sandy Fitzgerald

Sandy Fitzgerald has more than three decades in journalism and serves as a general assignment writer for Newsmax covering news, media, and politics. 

© 2024 Newsmax. All rights reserved.


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TikTok, with its links to China through its parent company, ByteDance, remains a "clear and present danger to America's national security" and the proposed legislation that could ban its use in the United States is based on its "malign conduct, not its content," Brendan Carr, said.
fcc, brendan carr, ban, tiktok, china, bytedance, national security, legislation
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2024-24-18
Monday, 18 March 2024 07:24 AM
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